1 Monday, 26 January 2004
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.06 a.m.
6 JUDGE PARKER: Good morning, everybody. May I remind the witness
7 of the affirmation that he took at the commencement of his evidence.
8 Mr. Rodic.
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I understand.
10 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Thank you very much, Your Honours.
11 Good morning.
12 WITNESS: NIKOLA SAMARDZIC [Resumed]
13 [Witness answered through interpreter]
14 Cross-examined by Mr. Rodic: Continued.
15 Q. Good morning, Mr. Samardzic. I will continue where I left off.
16 Mr. Samardzic, can you please tell us how many days ago you arrived in The
17 Hague to testify before this Court?
18 A. I believe about 15 days ago, or 12.
19 Q. Did you reread your statement, the one you gave to the
20 investigators, before you faced the Trial Chamber?
21 A. Which one do you mean?
22 Q. I mean the written statement you provided to the investigators of
23 the Tribunal.
24 A. Yes, I did reread it.
25 Q. Can you, then, please tell me when it was that you drew the
1 investigators' attention to the fact that there were corrections to be
2 made to your statement?
3 A. As soon as I arrived, or one of those days, that's when I told
4 them. However, even as early as testifying against Slobodan Milosevic, I
5 drew the investigators' attention to certain corrections that needed to be
6 made. I pointed out errors that I thought should be corrected, as well as
7 discrepancies. We're not talking about now; we're talking about perhaps
8 two years ago.
9 Q. You mean probably in the course of your testimony in the Milosevic
10 case, you suggested certain amendments?
11 A. Yes, very much so.
12 Q. Can you please tell me what exactly you pointed out?
13 A. There were several of those that related to -- just to give you an
14 example, to a number of individual things. A private trip with Milo
15 Djukanovic, from Budve to Bar it stated that Milo Djukanovic -- that we
16 had gone to Milo Djukanovic's house, whereas in fact Milo Djukanovic does
17 not own a house there. I suggested a correction immediately. I never
18 said that he had a house in Bar but that's what the transcript reflected.
19 So there were a number of mistakes.
20 Q. Were there any other material mistakes that you corrected at that
22 A. Yes. I had been part of this process for two and a half years. I
23 can't remember what other errors there were, but there were other errors.
24 Perhaps you may see fit to remind me. I can't remember now, but there
25 were other mistakes and errors that I pointed out during my testimony in
1 the Milosevic case. I certainly did not overlook them.
2 Q. What I want to know is about these corrections. Were they
3 inserted as you were testifying, or did you file a special written report
4 containing these corrections with the investigators?
5 A. I can no longer remember, after two years, whether I did this
6 orally or in writing. At any rate, I made certain corrections. I made
7 them clear to the Tribunal. This was a result of my misunderstanding,
8 possible misunderstanding, with Mr. Williams and mistranslation. There
9 were some other details which I deemed inessential. For example, the
10 issue of weapons in Bar. I didn't know who was buying these weapons and
11 who didn't. So there was discussion about this, whether it was Djukanovic
12 or not. Anyway, I did make corrections back then.
13 Q. Prior to your testimony, I was given these corrections in writing,
14 a copy of these corrections that you suggested. What I want to know is:
15 Before this, your new testimony in the Strugar case, did you go through
16 your statement again with the OTP and point out these corrections that
17 were handed to the Defence team in writing?
18 A. I made a few cursory marks about certain mistakes being there,
19 which I believed were errors. The lady from the Prosecution told me that
20 I should put this in writing, and I did, and this was to be submitted.
21 There were some other small things, minute mistakes, which I did not
22 believe were essential. But that was about that.
23 Q. Can you give me an example? Can you tell me one of those small
24 mistakes which you believe was incorrectly entered into your statement but
25 does not truly make a difference?
1 A. There are several of those. On one of the pages, I had the
2 Serbian version of the text. On the 7th of October, it says there was a
3 meeting at the assembly, a debate of Lord Carrington's plan. This did not
4 take place on the 7th, but rather on the 17th. So this must have been a
5 typo. Or, for example, the way -- the song about the fairy wailing from
6 the top of Lovcen, Dubrovnik forgive us, that song was mistranslated, in
7 my opinion, but I didn't pay much attention to this.
8 Q. But these are things that you consider minute, immaterial
9 mistakes, which you did not pay any special attention to, like the one you
10 just mentioned?
11 A. No. I didn't say that I paid no attention to those. That's what
12 you are claiming. I did pay attention, but I considered these mistakes to
13 be not particularly significant, and I believe that those could be set
14 right in the course of testimony and that other people could then
15 recognise these mistakes. Lord Carrington's plan was not discussed on the
16 7th but on the 17th of October, because that's when he wrote it. That's
17 clear enough. I don't think we should go any further into that, because
18 it's quite clear that this debate took place on the 17th. I don't think
19 it would make any sense for us to challenge that.
20 Q. During your testimony in answer to one of my questions, you said
21 that you had undergone surgery due to health problems. Can you tell me
22 when exactly this happened, the date and where, the place?
23 A. That was just before I met the investigators, the OTP
24 investigators, in Sydney, in the month of October, at a hospital in
25 Sydney. Both my legs were amputated. My legs were amputated.
1 Q. You've said that already. But what I want to know is, is the
2 date, if you remember, of the surgery itself.
3 A. There were several surgeries which took place throughout the month
4 of September and October, just before the investigators arrived in Sydney.
5 Q. Could we just make a little bit more specific, because when you
6 say "September" and "October," this is not very specific. Can we have the
7 exact dates, please?
8 A. I had undergone seven or eight surgeries at that time, and I can't
9 give you all the dates. I should go back to my documents and have a look
10 to find out exactly when they were, if you really insist on knowing.
11 Q. Fair enough. Can you tell us how long your rehabilitation was
12 after these surgeries, roughly speaking, in terms of time?
13 A. What do you mean, post-operational or rehabilitation? What
14 exactly do you mean?
15 Q. I mean following surgery, how long did you have to stay in the
16 hospital, roughly speaking?
17 A. I stayed for about ten days, five or six days, and then I was sent
18 home, pursuant to a request that I made, following which investigators
19 arrived from The Hague.
20 Q. Do you remember who was present when you gave the statement to the
22 A. I can't remember specifically, but there were several people.
23 Mr. Williamson was there on behalf of the Court, Mr. Stefanovic, two
24 people on behalf of the Australian authorities. That's four people. All
25 together. The interpreter was there. I'd not used the services of this
1 interpreter. And there was another person there. The driver too. Five
2 or six people at my house, because this took place in my house.
3 Q. Very well. Two persons on behalf of the Australian authorities.
4 Is one of them Darryl Parrish from the Australian federal police?
5 A. I can't remember the gentleman's name. I assume that's correct,
6 but you have them all listed on the front page, so you can check the
7 names. I don't know their names by heart. The two gentlemen who had
8 arrived on behalf of the Tribunal --
9 Q. Darryl Parrish's name is on the front page, so what I want to know
10 is if you know what the reason was for him attending this interview.
11 A. He was probably there to see what was going on, because I am now
12 an Australian citizen. I was granted Australian citizenship, and the
13 Australian state probably wanted to know what was going on, what was
14 happening to one of their citizens. I can't see any other reason for him
15 being there.
16 Q. I assume that on the last day of your interview, you signed the
17 statement before the investigators, didn't you, or was that on a different
19 A. It was on a different day.
20 Q. I would like to move on to something else now. During your
21 testimony, you said that you knew personally the former commander of the
22 naval district, Kristo Djurovic; is that right?
23 A. Yes, that's right.
24 Q. Can you please tell approximately how long you'd known that man
1 A. I know their family. I know him. I know his sister. This is an
2 honest family, a family of teachers, both their mother and their father
3 are teachers. I've known them for a very long time. I can't tell you
4 exactly how long, but it's an acquaintance of long-standing.
5 Q. Forgive me for interrupting you, but let's not go too far into
6 that. We can state, however, that you've known them for many years?
7 A. Yes. Yes, certainly, for quite many years [As interpreted]. His
8 sister is married to Petar Kljakovic, a former schoolmate of mine, and we
9 sailed together too.
10 Q. Do you remember when Kristo Djurovic was killed?
11 A. Those first days, I think it was on 5th of October or thereabouts,
12 that's when he was killed, if I remember correctly.
13 Q. During your testimony you also stated that you knew Admiral Jokic
14 while he was still in Boka Kotorska and before he became defence minister
15 for Serbia. How long was that acquaintance?
16 A. I hadn't known him for very long. We met occasionally, but not
17 too often. I was the manager of Jugooceanija and he was the commander of
18 the military naval district, as far as I remember. So there were sporadic
19 meetings. He would come to see me at my office, once, twice maybe. That
20 was all.
21 Q. Do you remember what the cabinet was when he became the defence
22 minister and who the Prime Minister was?
23 A. He became a minister in the Serbian government. I think it was
24 Zelenovic's government. But I can't tell precisely about his career and
25 what he did in Belgrade. I know he was a minister with the Serbian
1 government. Between his two stints in Boka Kotorska.
2 Q. And who was the prime minister -- the president of Serbia at the
3 time he was minister?
4 A. Slobodan Milosevic.
5 Q. Did you know personally any of the other high-ranking officers?
6 And I'm referring to such ranks as general, admiral.
7 A. Yes. I knew Nikola Tagovic [phoen], counter-admiral. I think
8 that was the rank. He was also a schoolmate of mine.
9 Q. What about General Jeremija and Damjanovic? Did you know them
11 A. No, I didn't know those generals.
12 Q. At the period of time we are referring to, what were their exact
14 A. Roughly. I didn't know the ranks in the army precisely, but one
15 of them was the commander of the Podgorica Corps, I believe, and the other
16 was just a commander. They were highly positioned officers, high-ranking
17 officers. I saw them at the meeting on the 1st of October, the presidency
18 of Montenegro. I never met them after.
19 Q. Can you just tell me more specifically, please?
20 A. What precisely?
21 Q. Who was the commander of the Podgorica Corps, and what was the
22 other man's position?
23 A. I don't know exactly. I know they were highly positioned. They
24 were high-ranking military officials, and that's why they attended the
25 meeting that took place on the 1st of October. The meeting of the
1 presidency and cabinet of Montenegro. It has, after all, been ten years
2 since, and I am a sick man. It's very difficult for me to think back and
3 remember correctly what their positions were. I know they were highly
4 positioned military officers, but I don't know what positions
6 Q. In your statement, on page 10, paragraph 4, it says that General
7 Radomir Jeremija is the commander of the Uzice Corps and Radomir
8 Damjanovic the commander of the Podgorica Corps. Can we use that to
9 perhaps show that at the time you in fact knew their exact positions?
10 A. No. I can't say that I knew precisely even back then who was the
11 commander of what. I knew they were high-ranking officers. I knew that
12 they were in leading positions in the JNA, the army, that was allegedly
13 defending the country. But that's all I can say, after 12 years.
14 Q. In 2000, was your memory perhaps fresher, since you were able to
15 specify with a great degree of precision who held what position?
16 A. Perhaps this was the case, yes, but I don't think that even at the
17 time I was perfectly certain about their respective positions, nor did I
18 believe that to be particularly essential, who was the commander of which
19 unit. I was not really interested, even at the time, in who commanded
20 which specific unit.
21 Q. I agree with you, but I think perhaps in that case you should not
22 have provided such a specific answer, or you should have avoided
23 specifying their positions, since Jeremija was at that time the commander
24 of the Podgorica and not of the Uzice Corps, and Damjanovic was already
25 part of the operational group?
1 MS. SOMERS: Objection. This is not examination; this is
2 lecturing, and we'd ask, perhaps, if we could move on.
3 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Rodic, you could put to the witness whether he
4 would agree that each of the generals you've named held the positions
5 you've identified. He will either be able to agree now or not. But for
6 you to go on and say: "Well, you shouldn't have been more specific in
7 your statement," is really comment rather than cross-examination. Thank
9 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] I apologise, Your Honour.
10 Q. Did you personally know General Strugar?
11 A. No, I didn't know him personally. I only heard of him. I know
12 who General Strugar was, but I didn't know him personally.
13 Q. Did you ever talk to General Strugar in person?
14 A. No. I only talked to him via Jokic, and this is what I said in my
16 Q. We'll come to that. You never directly spoke to him; is that
18 A. I did through Jokic.
19 Q. Can you please answer my question. I am asking you very
20 precisely. I'm not asking you about Jokic. I'm asking you whether you
21 spoke personally to General Strugar ever.
22 A. I'm answering. I spoke on the telephone with Jokic, who spoke
23 with me on behalf of Strugar.
24 Q. Who told you that?
25 A. What do you mean, who told me that?
1 Q. Who told you that they were talking to you on behalf of Strugar?
2 A. Admiral Jokic told me as follows: I and General Strugar --
3 Q. Please, I have to interrupt you at this point. I need a very
4 brief answer.
5 A. I'm sorry. I'm not --
6 Q. Your Honour, can you please warn the witness to answer my very
7 brief and very precise questions, and I only need very brief and very
8 precise answers from him. I believe my that question was very clear. The
9 question was whether he ever spoke personally to Mr. Strugar.
10 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Samardzic, the question is: Did you personally
11 speak to General Strugar? Did you speak to the General himself or did you
12 only speak through the Admiral? Can you tell us which it was, please.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I spoke with General Strugar via
14 Admiral Jokic. That's how I described it in my statement, and I stand by
15 that. That's it.
16 JUDGE PARKER: We, I think, can accept that the General has not
17 spoken personally -- that the witness has not spoken personally to the
18 General, but spoke, he believed, to the general through Admiral Jokic.
19 Thank you.
20 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
21 Q. The first time you saw General Strugar, did you know what duties
22 he discharged at the army at that time?
23 A. When I saw him, I also learnt what position he held. I've already
24 told you that. You've already asked me that.
25 Q. Can you please repeat: What was his position at the time when you
1 saw him that evening and when you learnt about the position?
2 A. He was the commander of the operations group, and he was also the
3 commander of the Territorial Defence of Montenegro. That's what I was
5 Q. Who told you that?
6 A. As I've already told you, and I repeat: I was late coming to that
7 session because I had a previous commitment. I went to Cetinje to escort
8 Mr. Wejnaendts, deputy of Lord Carrington. When I returned, I found what
9 I found as I've already described to you. My colleagues told me that
10 General Strugar was there and they also told me what his position was and
11 they also told me that the war had started.
12 Q. Very well, then. Did you hear of any other commander of any other
13 operations group?
14 A. No, not that evening. That's what I heard that evening.
15 Q. And later on?
16 A. I learned that before General Strugar, there was a Macedonian who
17 was the commander of the operations group.
18 Q. What was his name?
19 A. As far as I remember, it was Uzunovski or something like that.
20 Q. Could it be General Ruzinovski?
21 A. Yes, I believe so. I didn't know him. I never saw him. I only
22 heard of his existence.
23 Q. Did you hear approximately when the former one was replaced by the
25 A. No. I did not -- I wasn't there. I don't know when the change
1 took place.
2 Q. We could then deduce that Ruzinovski should have been the
3 commander of the operations group before October, in any case?
4 A. Before October, most probably, before October, yes, certainly. I
5 was informed that Strugar replaced this Macedonian, but not on the 1st of
6 October, as you now insist. I'm sure that it must have been earlier than
8 Q. Did you hear of any other general who discharged two sets of
9 duties at the same time, who was in two positions in the army at the same
11 A. No, I can't remember, but it would not have been unusual in the
12 Yugoslav People's Army for somebody to occupy two or three positions at
13 the time. That was a common practice in the Yugoslav People's Army from
14 the end of the People's War during the Second World War and later on it
15 did happen that one person would be in two or three positions at the same
17 Q. Very well, then. Could you tell us: An operations group, what
18 does it correspond to in the army? Would it be a brigade, a corps, an
20 A. Approximately, it would correspond to an army.
21 Q. So General Strugar was at the same time the commander of the
22 operations group, corresponding to an army, and the commander of the
23 Territorial Defence?
24 A. Yes. This should have been the case. Now, when he stopped being
25 the commander of the Territorial Defence, I can't tell you. This is
1 information that you can get from the army. I'm not aware of this
2 information. The operations group approximately was something that
3 Slobodan Milosevic later organised as the 1st, the 2nd, and the 3rd Army.
4 Q. When did Momir Bulatovic become president of Montenegro, the
5 president of the presidency of Montenegro?
6 A. After the first multi-party parliamentary elections in Montenegro.
7 Q. Can you be more precise about the time?
8 A. Yes. It was in December 1990.
9 Q. In the course of 1990 and 1991, you resided in Montenegro. Do you
10 know what kind of a military formation was stationed in Montenegro at the
12 A. I was not interested in that. I was not interested in any
13 military units in Montenegro that existed at that time. I know that there
14 was the Podgorica Corps.
15 Q. The Podgorica Corps, and at the sea?
16 A. At the sea, there was the military naval district of Boka
18 Q. On page 14, paragraph 3 of your statement --
19 MS. SOMERS: Excuse me. [Microphone not activated] If I may ask
20 the Chamber to assist us in getting the English version of the statement,
22 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] In English version, it is page 16,
23 paragraph 3.
24 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Rodic.
25 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] It says: "Since being appointed as
1 president, Bulatovic always had regular meetings with the commander of the
2 2nd Army. Very often I would see higher-ranking officers of the JNA,
3 usually generals, who arrived at these meetings with Bulatovic and
5 Q. How is it possible, then, Mr. Samardzic?
6 A. What do you mean, how is something possible? I don't understand
7 your question. What do you find impossible?
8 Q. At the time when Momir Bulatovic became president, you say that,
9 in your written statement, that he always had regular meetings with the
10 commander of the 2nd Army and that you would often see high-ranking
11 officers of the JNA, usually generals, who arrived at these meetings with
12 him. A little while ago, you said that at that time in Montenegro, there
13 was only the Podgorica Corps stationed in Montenegro. There was no army.
14 Can you please explain the discrepancy.
15 A. I cannot explain the discrepancy. You're quoting me about
16 something that probably doesn't refer to the beginning of the war, but the
17 time before the war. My office in Titograd was very close to Bulatovic's
18 office, and I did see generals coming in and leaving. I didn't pay too
19 much attention to that. And I didn't know whether he was the commander of
20 the 2nd Army or the Podgorica Corps. At that time, I did not -- I was not
21 interested in that. Maybe that is the explanation of this mistake. I do
22 not find this very significant, whether a general is the commander of an
23 army or the Podgorica Corps. As a civilian person, I didn't go into that
24 and I didn't pay too much attention to that fact.
25 Q. Very well, then. Please tell me: According to you, when did the
1 war start?
2 A. As far as Montenegro is concerned, it did not start before the 1st
3 of October. In Yugoslavia, it started earlier than that.
4 Q. When the war started, which military formation was stationed in
5 Montenegro? Was it a corps? Was it an army?
6 A. There was certainly the Podgorica Corps, because Podgorica is the
7 capital of Montenegro. There was the 5th Montenegrin in Titograd. That
8 is the 5th Titograd Brigade, which was stationed in Masline.
9 Q. So when the war started, Montenegro did not have an army or a unit
10 that would correspond to an army?
11 A. Montenegro never had a unit corresponding to an army. I didn't
12 say that Montenegro had a unit corresponding to an army. An army
13 comprised much more than Montenegro ever had.
14 Q. How come that President Bulatovic at that time had meetings with
15 the commander of the 2nd Army, when there was no 2nd Army in Montenegro?
16 A. Why should not they be allowed to be in a meeting? I don't
17 understand your question.
18 Q. At that time, there was no 2nd Army in Montenegro.
19 A. I never said that there was the 2nd Army in Montenegro.
20 Q. In your statement --
21 A. Whatever it says, let it stay. This is the operations group. The
22 army was created later on, when Yugoslavia was divided, when the
23 organisation in the army was changed.
24 MS. SOMERS: Counsel is misquoting from the English, and I can
25 either bring it on redirect or just ask now that the Chamber be made aware
1 of what was said.
2 JUDGE PARKER: My understanding, Ms. Somers, is that the witness
3 at the beginning indicated he did not really know what army groups were
4 present. He did know that the Podgorica Corps was there, but otherwise,
5 as a civilian, he took no interest. And the cross-examination has
6 proceeded from that foundation.
7 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation].
8 Q. When you left Crna Gora in June 1992 up to the present day you say
9 you have been following the situation in Montenegro via the Internet and
10 via the media. Can you please tell me, if you remember, when Pavle
11 Bulatovic was killed.
12 A. I believe that it was approximately sometime in 1999. I can't
13 tell exactly when. I know that he was killed in Belgrade.
14 Q. I just wanted to see whether you remember the time.
15 A. I don't remember exactly. It was either in 1999 or 2000,
16 approximately. I don't know exactly. I can't remember exactly. I know
17 that he was killed.
18 Q. Very well, then. Can you please tell me and explain how come that
19 for the period between the summer 1990 to 16 February 1991, when you were
20 discharging the duties of a member of parliament in the federal
21 parliament, you didn't -- you were not aware of the decisions of the
22 federal presidency from 1990 and 1991 about the illegal armament of
23 paramilitary formations and the import of arms from Croatia, the order on
24 disarmament, in the light of the fact that it was carried by all the
1 A. I've already told you that there were a lot of contradictions
2 about that. I did follow the media, and I can't tell you now, as I stand
3 here today, what was going on. I have mentioned that there was a lot of
4 controversy about that, and I believe that that was the case. How much
5 weapons entered the state, I can't tell you exactly.
6 Q. Did you follow the situation with regard to Dubrovnik before the
7 Tribunal in The Hague, in order to inform yourself who the accused was?
8 A. I don't understand your question. What is your question?
9 Q. About the situation in Dubrovnik. Have you followed the
10 situation? Did you inform yourself whether anybody was accused about what
11 happened in Dubrovnik?
12 A. You mean whether I followed when I was at home in Australia? Yes,
13 I did, as much as I could, as much as my health condition would allow me
14 to follow all that.
15 Q. Do you know who were the persons who were charged with the events
16 that took place in Dubrovnik during the war?
17 A. I know that General Strugar was charged with those crimes.
18 Q. Do you know if anybody else was charged?
19 A. I don't know whether there have been any other indictments. I
20 know that there was an investigation for Momir Bulatovic. I heard of
22 Q. Did you also hear that the Admiral Jokic was charged?
23 A. Yes. You have reminded me of that. And Captain Kovacevic as
24 well. I've heard that. I read it on the Internet.
25 Q. Did you follow the situation with General Jokic, what happened to
1 him after the indictment was published?
2 A. I read on the Internet that Admiral Jokic entered a guilty plea
3 and pleaded guilty.
4 Q. Are you familiar with the Rules and the Statute of this Tribunal,
5 or with the Dubrovnik indictment? I mean the full text. Because last
6 time I saw you carrying a document, a hard-bound document, that exactly
7 corresponds with the documents used here at the Tribunal.
8 A. I don't know what you saw, but --
9 Q. I mean the document you were carrying.
10 A. I read the entire indictment on the Internet. It wasn't
11 hard-bound or anything. I read it on the Internet, and anyone could.
12 Q. During your examination-in-chief, you referred to the Sava
13 Kovacevic Brigade as an honourable, glorious name from the People's
14 Liberation Struggle; is that correct?
15 A. Yes, by all means.
16 Q. You also said that the Sava Kovacevic Brigade had taken part in
17 military operations in 1991; is that correct?
18 A. It was on the Dubrovnik front; that's correct, the brigade. It
19 wasn't called "brigade." I think you're twisting things around there.
20 There are two distinct things. One is the 5th Montenegrin Brigade that
21 was led by Savo Kovacevic. It is stationed in Podgorica. Another thing
22 is a paramilitary unit called Savo Kovacevic. That was organised on the
23 Dubrovnik front back in 1991, and then they set up two different units
24 that were somehow associated with Savo Kovacevic, but those were two
25 different things.
1 Q. On page 13, paragraph 2, in B/C/S, page 15, paragraph 1, you say
2 that paramilitary units that were headed for Dubrovnik had soon gained a
3 reputation. Several groups were openly referred to as Chetniks, and one
4 of those units called itself the Sava Kovacevic unit.
5 Further, on page 21 in the B/C/S version, in English it's page 25,
6 paragraph 1, the sentence starts: "All those people cooperated closely
7 with Novak Kilibarda, the head of the National Party, who had been at the
8 forefront of setting up military formations. Velibor Voravic [phoen] from
9 the Main Board of the party were sending volunteers to the existing groups
10 and also established the Sava Kovacevic units."
11 In the same paragraph, you refer to Zizic, Predrag Bulatovic,
12 Novica Stanic, Predrag Popovic, as people who took part in organising
13 paramilitary units; is that correct?
14 A. Is what correct?
15 Q. What I've just read out of your statement.
16 A. Yes, that's correct.
17 Q. Very well.
18 A. The National Party took part in organising paramilitary units. It
19 was one of the main factors in organising the attack on Dubrovnik on the
20 part of Montenegro.
21 Q. So in your opinion, the Sava Kovacevic Brigade, which took part in
22 military operations was a paramilitary unit?
23 A. You're insinuating again.
24 Q. Will you please just tell me.
25 A. You are insinuating. That's all I have to say. The 5th
1 Montenegro Brigade is a regular JNA unit carrying on the traditions of the
2 5th Partizan Brigade from the liberation war and the Sava Kovacevic unit
3 was organised in those days on the Dubrovnik front. Those were two
4 different things.
5 Q. What was the rank of that paramilitary unit?
6 A. I can't say that.
7 Q. Battalion, brigade?
8 A. You're calling it brigade, with no end in sight. I'm not sure
9 where you get the idea at all. It was certainly a unit. It could have
10 been a battalion, easily a brigade. I can't say. The main thing is that
11 this paramilitary unit was set up to sling mud on the reputation of Sava
12 Kovacevic and the People's Liberation struggle. That was their aim. How
13 many people were involved, I can't say. The aim was to disgrace the JNA
14 and Montenegro as well, Montenegro who cherished Sava Kovacevic as their
15 greatest hero. The aim was not solely to conquer Dubrovnik and get as far
16 as Karlobag. You're asking me. I'm answering.
17 Q. Can you please stop shouting.
18 A. But you're insinuating.
19 Q. We have the Honourable Chamber here to stop me in case they
20 believe I'm insinuating. They're keeping a watchful eye on this
21 cross-examination, and they will be sure to intervene if necessary.
22 So, in your opinion, we can completely rule out the possibility
23 that the unit which went by the name of Sava Kovacevic was officially part
24 of the Territorial Defence of Montenegro?
25 A. I never said this. Who said this?
1 Q. I'm drawing my own conclusions, because you said that a
2 paramilitary unit that called itself Sava Kovacevic had been set up, which
3 would seem to rule out the possibility that such a unit was in fact part
4 of the regular forces of the Territorial Defence of Montenegro. It can't
5 be both.
6 A. But that's your own conclusion, a conclusion that you have drawn.
7 This was not my conclusion.
8 Q. Can you please explain, then.
9 A. There's nothing for me to explain. I have told you about the
10 existence of this unit. It was a paramilitary unit. It had been set up.
11 Whether it was part of the TO or not, I can't say. That's not for me to
12 say. How am I supposed to know that?
13 Q. Please --
14 A. Allow me. There was a war. How the army is organised and what is
15 being done at the time, I can't say with mathematical precision. To begin
16 with, I was not fully aware of everything that was going on, and I never
17 said I was. I only told you about things I knew. I never said otherwise.
18 Q. That's what you're stating. You're talking about things you
19 know. You say that there was a paramilitary unit that called itself Sava
20 Kovacevic. I'm going to try to phrase my question in a different way now.
21 Was there a regular unit of the Montenegro Territorial Defence
22 that called itself Sava Kovacevic and that also took part in military
23 operations in 1991?
24 A. I don't know who the Sava Kovacevic unit belonged to. Territorial
25 Defence, was it merely a paramilitary unit, was it -- did it serve as some
1 sort of camouflage for another Chetnik unit, I can't say. The priest
2 Anfilohije was brought over to educate the army to traditional folklore
3 music on the Dubrovnik front. Don't ask me who the unit belonged to. You
4 should find someone else to ask.
5 Q. Is it possible that there were two units called Sava Kovacevic at
6 the time in 1991?
7 A. No, but there were two units bearing the name of Sava Kovacevic.
8 Q. Can you tell me specifically, I'm asking you about 1991 and the
9 Dubrovnik operation, the military operation. Were there two units at the
10 same time that were called Sava Kovacevic?
11 A. I don't know.
12 Q. Thank you. Do you realise that people whom you referred to in
13 Crna Gora, such as Predrag Popovic, have denied parts of your testimony,
14 Novica Stanic, Zoran Zizic, said either you had been paid to lie or you
15 just didn't know. All those people denied having taking part in the
16 setting up of paramilitary units.
17 A. The people you refer to are all members of the National Party, of
18 course it's their right to claim they took no part. It is my position
19 that they did take part.
20 Q. You know this with sure and certain knowledge?
21 A. I know that what they did at the time was material to the entire
22 process of organising paramilitary units, and they were in favour of
23 taking Dubrovnik as quickly as possible, precisely the people you've now
25 Q. Very well.
1 A. Of course, one would only expect them to deny these accusations,
2 after so many years.
3 Q. Can you tell me whether you've ever been to Vinogradi Motel? Did
4 you ever visit that place?
5 A. When do you mean?
6 Q. 1991.
7 A. No. I didn't go there in 1991.
8 Q. In your capacity as foreign minister for Montenegro's government,
9 did you ever go to Vinogradi Motel?
10 A. No. Those were things that journalists made up, and soldiers of
11 the 7th Battalion, who claimed that I had gone there. I never even went
12 to Herceg-Novi in those days. I never even got close. I can tell you
13 this is a lie, nothing else. You shouldn't try too hard about this.
14 Q. What is a lie, an absolute lie?
15 A. What was said the last time around, you're trying to say that I
16 was in Vinogradi, whereas I wasn't. I know that things that have been
17 pillaged the looted, the so-called war booty, was being collected there.
18 That's what I learned about the place.
19 Q. Do you know Zoran Kovacevic?
20 A. Zoran Kovacevic? Zoran Kovacevic? What do you mean? I think
21 you're taunting me a little bit there. I never saw that man. Of course I
22 heard about the man. I know that this man claimed to have met me and that
23 I asked him to do some looting for me. That's nonsense.
24 Q. What did he say you wanted from him?
25 A. He said in the papers, the Chetnik paper Dan - it's a broad
1 sheet - that I had asked a man named Zoran Kovacevic to go and rob Tereza
2 Kesovija's house and to bring for me a trailer from Dubrovnik. This is so
3 low, so far below the belt that frankly I wonder why you're bringing this
5 Q. Did you publish any official denial of this?
6 A. Yes, of course I did. I said that this was nonsense. I never
7 used a wheelchair in my life. As you see, I'm not using a wheelchair now.
8 I was a sailor. Perhaps I would have asked him to steal a ship for me, or
9 a yacht, but certainly not a wheelchair.
10 Q. Very well.
11 A. So you're far off the mark, far off the mark. This doesn't make
12 any sense at all. This is pure nonsense. I mean, I can't bring myself to
13 believe that this is your level, that you should be insinuating things
14 like these.
15 Q. I'm not insinuating. I'm merely asking questions.
16 A. For God's sake. Yes, I see exactly the sort of questions you're
17 asking me.
18 Q. Were you ever accused of embezzling $400,000 in Montenegro while
19 you were the manager of Jugooceanija on or about?
20 A. That was an allegation made by Slobodan Milosevic. This is also
21 nonsense, the same kind of nonsense as the allegation that I had had
22 Tereza Kesovija's house robbed. This is precisely the kind of thing that
23 my testimony in the Milosevic case gave rise to.
24 Q. Can you tell me exactly on what days meetings of the Montenegro
25 government or cabinet are held?
1 A. Nowadays I'm not aware of when exactly they take place, but in my
2 time it was on Thursdays is.
3 Q. You said that JNA units had suffered losses on the very first day
4 and that these losses were substantial. Do you know exactly what these
5 losses, these casualties, were on the first day?
6 A. When did I say that these losses had been substantial? Where did
7 you read that?
8 Q. You said during the examination-in-chief, in answer to a question
9 by the OTP, and then you talked about how many people got killed, about
10 157 Montenegrins and so on and so forth?
11 A. No. I found out from the official report that 157 Montenegros had
12 been killed. I thought those were heavy losses, because Montenegro is a
13 small country. I did keep an eye on how many people were getting killed,
14 because as the manager of Jugooceanija, I was organising financial aid for
15 the families of victims or the families of those who got killed. We
16 provided financial assistance for mothers and widows. At that time, the
17 count had already reached 100 in the first month. That's how it was at
18 the time, roughly speaking. So those were the heavy losses that I spoke
19 about, and those were indeed heavy losses, because Montenegro is a small
21 Q. During the examination-in-chief, after you were shown the orders
22 by Momir and Pavle Bulatovic, when he spoke about the kinds of weapons
23 that were used on the Dubrovnik front, you go on to claim that the JNA
24 units had suffered losses on the first day, that the losses were heavy,
25 and you go on to say how many people got killed. Do you know this as a
1 fact, that the JNA units suffered losses on the first day on the Dubrovnik
3 A. I'm not sure if you're quoting me correctly. I know that the
4 second or third day, coffins started arriving back, and that to the west
5 of Dubrovnik, losses were greater than to the east, towards the Montenegro
6 border. That's what I knew about, and that's the only thing I really
7 spoke about. I didn't say anything else.
8 Q. Do you know what happened exactly, what the casualties were at the
10 A. To the west of Dubrovnik, in the direction of Ston and Trsteno
11 [phoen], JNA units were being ambushed and people were killed. Those were
12 the losses. Not all on the same day, of course, but every day TV covered
13 these losses, these casualties, and brought the names of the people who
14 had been killed.
15 Q. As part of your work for the state authorities, did you ever
16 attend a commemorative meeting or session held in honour of the victims
17 who had been killed?
18 A. I can't remember. There were such meetings, but probably I did
19 not attend, or maybe I was needed elsewhere.
20 Q. When you say that such meetings were held, do you know when, on
21 what specific occasion?
22 A. On the 2nd, perhaps, or perhaps on the 3rd of October, the 7th, in
23 those days. There were meetings that were held, commemorative meetings
24 that were held. I don't think I attended any of those.
25 Q. Do you know where Ivanica is?
1 A. Which Ivanica do you have in mind? There's one in Serbia and
2 there's one near Trebinje, or rather, near Dubrovnik.
3 Q. Whose territory is that?
4 A. I don't know. It's a borderline town between Herzegovina and
6 Q. It belongs to Bosnia and Herzegovina?
7 A. No. No. I think it's a borderline town, but I can't say who it
8 belongs to. Ivanica is -- straddles the road, the Dubrovnik-Trebinje
9 road. I drove through many times, but I never really asked myself where
10 it was officially in Herzegovina or Croatia. It used to be a single
11 state, you know, so I took no interest in that, and I'm hardly able to
12 determine that now.
13 Q. Did you hear that someone got killed in Ivanica on the 1st of
15 A. On the 1st of October, no, I did not hear about anyone getting
16 killed. The 1st of October, specifically.
17 Q. Perhaps later on you did hear about that, but what I'm asking is
18 that: Did you hear that anyone was killed on the 1st of October in
20 A. No, not on that day, no.
21 Q. Did you ever hear the name of Nojko Marinovic?
22 A. No.
23 Q. You don't know who the person is?
24 A. No.
25 Q. Can I please have the usher's assistance.
1 Your Honours, I would like to have copies of a newspaper article
2 distributed that I will now show the witness. Then I will ask questions
3 based on this newspaper article.
4 MS. SOMERS: Excuse me, Your Honour. May I just make a point
5 before we proceed? Because when counsel cross-examines and makes
6 reference to the transcript, he has not been giving page numbers. I just
7 wanted to indicate to the Chamber that the discussion about casualties
8 appears on -- what I have is unofficial -- page 40 of the transcript of
9 day 10. And I would be very grateful if the Chamber might instruct
10 counsel to cite us to a place in the transcript. The reason I say that is
11 it does not say what counsel said it says. It would be helpful to have it
12 in front of us.
13 JUDGE PARKER: I believe, Mr. Rodic, it would help the smooth
14 conduct of the case if, when you're referring specifically to something in
15 the transcript, if you were able to give a reference to it, it will make
16 it easier for ourselves and for counsel for the Prosecution. Identify
17 precisely what it is you're referring to.
18 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] I agree, Your Honour. This testimony
19 so far has been very extensive. I've made notes. I've been using these
20 notes while asking questions about what he has testified so far. In any
21 case, if I need to resort to the transcript, I'll try and find the
22 specific place in the transcript.
23 Q. These are two texts. Actually, one article from the newspaper
24 called Pobjeda.
25 A. Where is this from? Is this Pobjeda or is it not Pobjeda?
1 Q. This is Pobjeda, dated 3 October, and the title is "The troops."
2 Can you please read the framed part of this text, monitors and proves --
3 if you find it easier, I'll read it for you.
4 A. Please do.
5 Q. I believe that at the meeting in The Hague on Friday, it's going
6 to be very hard. I'm mentioning a fact here --
7 MS. SOMERS: Excuse me, Your Honour. There's no indication of who
8 authored this article, and that would be very helpful certainly to know
9 whether this is an editorial or an article or just what it is.
10 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] This is an article from the Pobjeda
11 newspaper, as you can find it written on the margin.
12 MS. SOMERS: There's no attribution, Your Honour.
13 JUDGE PARKER: That seems to be the case. I don't know that
14 Mr. Rodic can do anything about that.
15 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] At the moment, I can't, Your Honour.
16 However, in any event, I believe that we can provide you with the original
17 of the newspaper at a later stage, and I can deliver this original to the
18 Honourable Chamber. This article, which was published on page 5 of the
19 Pobjeda daily, dated 3 October 1991, the copy is somewhat illegible,
20 because I received it via fax. However, the original, which I currently
21 don't have on me, I can deliver to the Trial Chamber at a later stage.
22 MS. SOMERS: Your Honour, the Prosecution would simply object to
23 any introduction into evidence until there's more of a predicate laid and
24 identification of who wrote what, what the nature of the article.
25 JUDGE PARKER: It can't be a basis for admission that the
1 newspaper has not identified the journalist or editor that wrote a
2 particular piece that it publishes. But the use that can be made of this
3 at the moment would appear to me to be no more than to learn whether views
4 attributed in the article to the witness, Mr. Samardzic, are his views or
5 not, and I'm sure that's where Mr. Rodic is about to go. If they do not
6 reflect the witness's views, that will be the end of these articles.
7 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. This is
8 precisely what I wanted to achieve with this article, because there are
9 some parts which are emphasised under the title "monitors and evidence"
10 referred to what the witness has said, as well as the part of the text
11 entitled, "A commitment before The Hague conference." There's also a
12 photo on this page depicting the session in commemoration of the fallen
14 I'm going to read this passage under the title "monitors and
15 evidence." I quote: "I believe that it's going to be very hard at the
16 meeting in The Hague on Friday. I am mentioning this fact because the
17 international media who have organised themselves against us and yesterday
18 in Dubrovnik monitors tried to prove that Dubrovnik had been attacked by
19 the army and by Montenegrins. At the same time, our lads were dying in
21 This may be a language different to the one that we usually speak,
22 but the objective is for us to prove that we have been attacked and that
23 we are just doing our duty and defending our country. When it comes to
24 the issue of Prevlaka, we have to prove that Prevlaka is part of our
25 territory, the territory of Montenegro, and that it was never part of
1 Croatia. What right do they have to claim this from us, to attack this?
2 I see this as a huge tragedy and a huge misfortune. If things are as they
3 are, we have to fight, we have to defend ourselves (Nikola Samardzic)."
4 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation]
5 Q. Mr. Samardzic, did you attend this session in commemoration of the
6 fallen soldiers? Did you ever issue this statement? Did the journalists
7 interpret you correctly?
8 A. Firstly, I did not attend this session. I'm not in this photo.
9 I'm not there. Secondly, I didn't give a statement like this. I did
10 speak at one of these sessions, saying that we were getting ready for a
11 war, but this is not what I said. I have to remind you, Mr. Rodic, that
12 this is Pobjeda, and Pobjeda was edited by an ultranationalist who wrote
13 all sorts of things those days, and he set the tone and he put words into
14 people's mouths that they never said themselves. So at that time it was a
15 disgrace. Pobjeda was a disgraceful daily. Allow me to finish this. If
16 you look at -- please allow me. You've asked me a question.
17 Q. You've said what you wanted to say.
18 A. Allow me.
19 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Samardzic, would you please pause. Could I ask
20 you whether these words reflect what you said in any public statement or
21 to a journalist?
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I said that on the 1st
23 of October, when I'd heard that we were attacked, I said that we would
24 defend ourselves. This is the only I think that I said. I've already
25 said that. And if there is anything else that I said in public, it was
1 about the way we should behave in The Hague at the peace conference. I
2 couldn't say where people were killed, when people were killed, because I
3 didn't know that. I wasn't aware of that. At that time, the media
4 brought all sorts of lies that referred to war operations and to my
5 engagement in Jugooceanija. This is a really long story. I wouldn't go
6 into that. One of the things that were carried at the time was that I
7 embezzled money. But I was attacked by that daily because of my political
9 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Samardzic, you're going beyond my question. If
10 you'd just pause there. You have indicated that the comments at the very
11 last part of the first article, which is dealing with monitors and
12 evidence, on page 4, is it, reflects something that you did say. Did you
13 speak in public about Prevlaka?
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honours. On several
15 occasions I spoke publicly about Prevlaka. But I never said that Prevlaka
16 belonged to Montenegro. I said that Prevlaka was Croatian territory that
17 we had to gain, that we had to get. I had transcripts of the session of
18 the parliament of Montenegro, and I said that we had to gain Prevlaka in
19 negotiations. That was my position. I said that we could get Prevlaka
20 only if we negotiated with Croatia rather than if we waged a war against
21 Croatia. That was my position.
22 JUDGE PARKER: So that what is recorded here in this newspaper
23 article does not reflect what you have said publicly or to a journalist?
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Very often I spoke about Prevlaka on
25 TV and in papers. My position is very clear on Prevlaka. I have a lot of
1 documents about that, Your Honour. I did say that we had to get Prevlaka,
2 but that Prevlaka was Croatian and that we could only get Prevlaka if we
3 negotiated with Croatia. And in that respect, I also have a book by
4 Hrvoje Kacic, in which it says that Bulatovic and I negotiated with
5 President Tudjman about Prevlaka. We had a special meeting in The Hague.
6 We did not inform Milosevic about this meeting, and we said at that time
7 to President Tudjman that Prevlaka was Croatian but that Montenegrins had
8 to have it because it closed the entrance into the Boka Kotorska bay and
9 that it naturally belonged to Montenegro but that we had to make that
10 official through negotiations. It was our position -- and not only mine,
11 but the position of the Montenegrin authorities to negotiate, and that was
12 our initiative. Everything else is a blatant lie and trying to set me up.
13 We started the initiative to negotiate the issue of Prevlaka and ended the
14 war in that way. The facts are totally different than what Mr. Rodic is
15 now trying to say.
16 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Rodic isn't trying to say anything,
17 Mr. Samardzic, nor am I trying to say anything. I am trying to find out
18 whether what is written in this article reflects what you have said or
19 contradicts or is different from what you have said, and it is very
20 difficult to understand what your answer is, because you don't answer that
21 question. Because you don't answer that question. You go on to give a
22 long speech about your views on the subject instead of saying: "Yes, I
23 said this," or "No, I did not say this." If you can understand that
24 both. Rodic and I simply want to know whether you said what is here or
25 whether you didn't. That's all we need to know at the moment.
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, this is not what I
3 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
4 Now, Mr. Rodic, does that help you at all?
5 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. I am trying
6 to get at that myself, and I would for that like to thank you. I'm just
7 going to follow up on your last question.
8 Q. Mr. Samardzic, can you tell me: Pobjeda, whose paper was that?
9 A. This is the public paper of the Assembly of Montenegro at the
11 Q. The editor in chief that you've mentioned, Konatar, was he
12 appointed by the Assembly of Montenegro?
13 A. More or less so.
14 Q. Since you have just said that you did not say this, did you issue
15 an official denial?
16 A. At that time, there were attacks against me from all sides. I did
17 not try to deny anything. There was no way for me to deny so many words
18 used against me at that time.
19 Q. Can you tell me when this was, what year, what date, and who
20 attacked you?
21 A. There were constant attacks during that period. Some of them were
22 because of Jugooceanija. The others were about my political positions,
23 about the war in Dubrovnik, and Pobjeda the attacks were the strongest.
24 Q. Are there any articles which showed these attacks or demonstrated
25 these attacks?
1 A. Yes, there are.
2 Q. Do they date from, let's say, October 1991?
3 A. There were a lot of articles attacking me in Pobjeda. If you want
4 me to furnish you with these, I can do that.
5 Q. Thank you very much. So it would be true to say that this part of
6 the article that we have just read was made up by the editor in chief or
7 one of the journalists, and you never said that.
8 A. Somebody just twisted my words around in order to adapt it to the
9 then prevailing policies.
10 Q. Did you read the part entitled, "Commitments before The Hague
11 conference," from the top to the first paragraph under the photo?
12 A. No, I didn't. However, I believe that this is just one of the
13 positions that they brought at the time about The Hague conference. I
14 didn't pay much attention to that, because they wrote what they wanted to
15 write, as they pleased.
16 Q. Did the units of MUP, of the Republic of Croatia, attack the units
17 of JNA in the territory of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and did the reservists
18 and soldiers serving in the JNA who were from Montenegro die in
20 A. Yes. I believe that something like that happened.
21 Q. Did you ever speak about this event? Did you issue any positions
22 on this event?
23 A. No. I didn't issue any positions on this event. I was aware of
24 the fact that soldiers were killed beyond the territory of Dubrovnik
25 municipality and that these soldiers were from Montenegro. I was a
1 civilian. I did not therefore issue any particular statements on that.
2 Q. Were you not worried by the fact that soldiers who were members of
3 the JNA and who hailed from Montenegro were getting killed in
4 Bosnia-Herzegovina by Croatian units?
5 A. Certainly I was greatly concerned.
6 Q. Would it not have been a natural thing for you, as a minister, to
7 do to comment on that?
8 A. Yes, certainly. But look at the way you're phrasing your
9 questions. I did speak about that, but that was not the only theatre of
10 war at the time. It wasn't only in Bosnia; it was also in Dubrovnik. It
11 was around Cilipi. It was in Konavle. So probably at one point it spread
12 to Herzegovina because it's very close to the border. So it spread to
13 Bosnia and Herzegovina. That's correct.
14 Q. You did not issue any official comments, did you?
15 A. No particular comments. I held talks about Prevlaka. I spoke
16 about The Hague conference, and those were my reports to the Assembly.
17 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, if I may, I am keeping
18 track of the time, but if I may just finish this question concerning this
19 different section from the same article.
20 Q. Here you have a caption saying, "Commitments before The Hague
21 conference." It reads: "Nikola Samardzic, foreign minister, in his
22 report, expressed his views regarding the expectations from The Hague
23 conference. Speaking about the conference, Samardzic reminded those
24 present that Montenegro's delegation had taken a flexible attitude to the
25 Yugoslav crisis in order to find a solution and cease hostilities.
1 However, developments near the Croatian border, and especially
2 developments between Ravno and Slano clearly show that the losses suffered
3 by our units were to a very high extent suffered in a territory that does
4 not belong to Croatia but rather to Bosnia and Herzegovina, that MUP units
5 arrived and ambushed our own units, all of which clearly indicates that
6 Montenegro has been attacked by the Croatian MUP with intent. This is an
7 attack on the JNA. This is an attack on young Montenegrins who are
8 serving in the JNA. I said this to the Croatian side openly -- to the
9 Serbian side openly that our boys were better than those from Valjevo."
10 Did you indeed state this?
11 A. Yes, I did say this, but I think these were reports that relate to
12 the period before the 1st of October. On the 16th of September, Momir
13 Knezevic and I travelled to The Hague to attend the conference of foreign
14 ministers, the peace conference, and at the conference I spoke about the
15 incidents in Herzegovina and about our people being killed there. That's
16 what I spoke about. But this related to the period before the 3rd of
17 October and before the 1st of October, but rather, in September, before
18 war operations began. That's when Momir Knezevic and I went to The Hague
19 and that's when I spoke about some of the things that you have referred
20 to. I clashed with Minister Separovic, the Croatian minister, because my
21 position was that our units were being attacked from churches, and that's
22 the discussion that we had, and that's the discussion that you're probably
23 referring to. But this has nothing to do with the 3rd of October or with
24 battles during the Dubrovnik operation. This was before the operation
25 even began.
1 Secondly, Ravno is not on Montenegro's side of the border to
2 Croatia. It's on the other side, as I said before.
3 Q. Very well. Let me just ask you the following: When you say that
4 you made protestations to the Croatian minister, Separovic, in relation to
5 attacks against our lads, or our people, can you tell us who specifically
6 you mean? Who was attacked in Bosnian territory?
7 A. The day I travelled with Momo Knezevic, I learned that our lads
8 had been killed in Herzegovina, and I spoke about that. I spoke to Lord
9 Carrington about that. Of course I defended Montenegro. What else was I
10 supposed to do? Separovic was angry with me for saying that, and a debate
11 ensued. That was in mid-September, I believe.
12 Q. Very well. Mid-September. Did you have any reliable or more
13 precise information about the Croats opening fire on those units, JNA
14 units, from churches and religious buildings? Do you know what
15 specifically these buildings and churches were?
16 A. I can't remember any longer. I know that I was told that fire was
17 being opened from churches and religious facilities, and that some of our
18 lads had been killed. I spoke about that at the meeting, and I told
19 Separovic about that. Separovic was mad. He said that I was attacking
20 the Croatian churches. I said at the time: "If you open fire from a
21 religious building, it ceases to be a religious building; it becomes a
22 firing position." That was my attitude.
23 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, this may be a good time
24 to break.
25 JUDGE PARKER: Ms. Somers.
1 MS. SOMERS: Thank you, Your Honour. Just an administrative
2 matter from the transcript. If I could just let the transcriber know on
3 page 30, line 23, there is a line of questioning that is attributed to me
4 but it in fact is Mr. Rodic's, and it would be helpful, I think, just to
5 clear that up. Thank you.
6 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Rodic, have you finished your questions on this
7 newspaper particle?
8 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour.
9 JUDGE PARKER: Are you wanting it marked for identification, or
10 are you not wanting to pursue it at all?
11 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] I do. I do want it marked for
12 identification, Your Honour. We shall at a later stage provide you with
13 the original copy, as I promised.
14 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you. Well, what we have at the moment, the
15 document that is being shown to Mr. Samardzic and which he has spoken
16 about, will be marked for identification.
17 THE REGISTRAR: That will be D16 ID.
18 JUDGE PARKER: That's marked for identification as D16, Mr. Rodic.
19 Now, do we correctly understand that you must be drawing near the
20 end of your cross-examination now?
21 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I'm afraid I can't
22 confirm this. I hope you will understand that this is a very important
23 witness, both to the Defence and to the OTP, and I believe you have seen
24 the kind of problem that I'm facing during my cross-examination. I must
25 point out that when my learned friend and colleague Ms. Somers examined
1 this witness about everything that had to do with Montenegro or the JNA,
2 there was no section of the answer saying: "Yes, but at the same time the
3 Croats were doing this or that, or the Croatian army were doing this or
4 that." Whatever I asked in relation to Croatia regularly I got an answer
5 which had more to do with the Serbs and Montenegrins. I was not even able
6 to interrupt the witness to avoid unnecessary conflict. Therefore, I was
7 forced to spend the best part of my cross-examination dealing with answers
8 that were unduly long and off the mark. Therefore, I believe that I could
9 finish my cross-examination in the course of the next session after the
10 break. I hope that Your Honours will understand my request.
11 JUDGE PARKER: Ms. Somers.
12 MS. SOMERS: I know we all have a desperate need for a break, but
13 I must say that if in fact I would put a standing objection to relevance
14 if the issue is going to be what did the Croatians to, what did the
15 Croatians do, to colloquially, as it is referred to in this Tribunal, is
16 in no way relevant to what was done by the side that is represented by
17 General Strugar's presence here, and I would simply ask the Chamber to
18 assist us in making sure that we don't have to get up with considerable
19 standing objections to relevance, if that is going to be the continued
20 ground of examination.
21 JUDGE PARKER: We will deal with those matters if and as they
22 arise, Ms. Somers. Your cross-examination has gone on for considerable
23 time, Mr. Rodic. We are conscious of the difficulties you have
24 experienced at times, and for that reason we've allowed you to carry on
25 this long, but we look forward to your cross-examination concluding during
1 the next session. Thank you.
2 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Thank you very much, Your Honours.
3 I'll do my best to comply with that.
4 JUDGE PARKER: We will have a 20-minute break now.
5 --- Recess taken at 10.41 a.m.
6 --- On resuming at 11.08 a.m.
7 JUDGE PARKER: Yes, Mr. Rodic.
8 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
9 Q. Mr. Samardzic, on page 14 of the English version, paragraph 4 --
10 paragraph 2, you say: "When the next session -- when the next government
11 meeting was held on the 4th of October, I was already strongly opposed to
13 On the same page, in paragraph 3 of the English version of your
14 statement, you say: "However, at the session held on the 4th of October, I
15 expressed my strong opposition to war. No one, however, was much bothered
16 by what I had to say, because in their eyes, everything was going
18 Is it true that you said this at a government meeting, at a
19 cabinet meeting?
20 A. Yes. I said this at the cabinet meeting. I said that I believed
21 this war was unnecessary and that we should not fight in Dubrovnik. It
22 was on the 4th or 7th of October. It was on either of these two days.
23 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Can I please have the usher's
25 Q. This document is the records of a meeting of the Montenegro
1 government. We have made copies of the first two pages, the front page
2 and the next page, where you can see who was in attendance at the meeting.
3 In the further course of our examination, if necessary, we shall provide
4 the full minutes, the full minutes, however, are quite extensive.
5 Mr. Samardzic, the document you have in front of you is the
6 minutes from the 46th meeting of the Montenegro government, held on the
7 26th of September, 1991. The next thing you have is the minutes of the
8 47th government meeting, held on the 3rd of October, 1991. The third
9 thing is the minutes of the 48th government meeting of the Republic of
10 Montenegro, held on the 10th of October, 1991. Let us, please, start with
11 the last one, the one that took place on the 10th of October, on page 2 --
12 MS. SOMERS: Objection, Your Honour. These are not minutes
13 per se. This is simply records of attendance and the first page of a
14 document called "Minutes."
15 JUDGE PARKER: It was made clear, as I understand it, by
16 Mr. Rodic, that he, for the moment, merely was offering to the witness the
17 first page of much more extensive minutes. Do you have any objection on
18 that issue?
19 MS. SOMERS: As long as the record reflects that what is being
20 shown is only the first page, and if in fact it comes to pass that we need
21 to have the entire document.
22 JUDGE PARKER: Well, Mr. Rodic has foreshadowed that, if
23 necessary, that will be made available.
24 Carry on, Mr. Rodic.
25 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Thank you. Thank you, Your Honour.
1 Q. Can you please look at the last document, dated 10th of October.
2 Absent from the meeting are Nikola Samardzic, Pavle Bulatovic, and Predrag
3 Obradovic. You can see that you were absent from that meeting, can't you?
4 It's in the minutes.
5 A. At that time, I was the manager of Jugooceanija and foreign
6 minister. I did not attend all these meetings right from the start, nor
7 did I reside in Podgorica. I drove over from Kotor and I would usually
8 make it to the meeting halfway through the meeting or towards the end,
9 late in the meeting. So these minutes that you are showing me, Mr. Rodic,
10 were -- these notes were made at the beginning of the meeting. I am sure
11 that I did not attend the beginning of this meeting. However, at some
12 point in the course of the meeting, I would arrive and I would take part
13 in its work.
14 Q. Did you arrive at the session on the 10th of October?
15 A. I can't remember specifically, but I know that I came to all these
16 meetings. Well, there were meetings that I couldn't attend, meetings that
17 I was absent from, but as a rule, on account of my dual position, I would
18 usually make it halfway through the meeting for the simple reason that I
19 did not reside in Podgorica.
20 Q. Very well. The government meeting dated the 3rd of October, again
21 it says absent, Zoran Zizic, vice-president of the government, Predrag
22 Obradovic, Vojin Djukanovic, Pavle Bulatovic, and Ilija Lakusic and Nikola
23 Samardzic, members of the government. Did you attend that meeting on the
24 3rd of October?
25 A. I probably arrived halfway through the meeting. I was late, as
1 usual. As I said, I would usually arrive halfway through the meeting, on
2 account of my dual position, and I would drive from Kotor to Podgorica for
3 these meetings, because I did not live in Podgorica. And that's why these
4 minutes reflect what they do. I was not there as a rule at the beginning
5 but I would arrive halfway through.
6 Q. Is it your statement that you attended these cabinet meetings,
7 even if you were not there for the beginning of each single meeting?
8 A. Most of the meetings, yes. It's been a very long time and I can't
9 remember specifically which I attended and which I didn't. On some days,
10 I may have been absent, because I had been away on business. However, I
11 did attend some of the meetings and some others I did not attend.
12 Q. Were you there on the 3rd?
13 A. I think so. I think I arrived halfway through the meeting.
14 Q. Are you sure or is this merely an assumption?
15 A. I'm sure that I was there on the 3rd and on the 7th. I arrived
16 from Kotor and I attended part of the cabinet meeting, after which I would
17 drive back to Kotor. That was my regular routine concerning my work for
18 the government at that time.
19 Q. The minutes dated 26th of September, 46th meeting of the
20 government, Jusuf Fetahovic, Nevica [phoen] Avramovic and Nikola Samardzic
21 are listed as absent. Did you also attend this meeting, the 26th of
22 September, 1991?
23 A. Probably not, because as far as I can remember, I was away at that
25 Q. These seven-day intervals between the meetings, the 26th of
1 September, the 3rd of October, and the 10th of October, what about those?
2 A. It was an extraordinary situation, and the government convened
4 Q. These specific documents we're looking at, do these correspond
5 with the weekly meetings of the government?
6 A. Not in their entirety. The 3rd and the 7th, for example, there's
7 no seven days in between.
8 Q. The 3rd and the 10th?
9 A. Yes, the 3rd and 10th.
10 Q. The 26th of September and the 3rd of October, does that
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. This means that the 4th of October and the 1st of October sessions
14 of the government are not here. These minutes are missing, the meetings
15 that you've referred to in the course of your testimony.
16 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, we would like to tender
17 these minutes into evidence and to be marked for evidence.
18 JUDGE PARKER: The first page of what is tendered as the minutes
19 of the 46th, 47th, and 48th sessions of the government of Montenegro will
20 be received in evidence.
21 THE REGISTRAR: That will be D17.
22 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
23 Q. Are you familiar with the fact that there were attacks on the JNA
24 barracks in Prevlaka and also on other military facilities? That was in
25 September 1991.
1 A. I'm not aware of that. There could not have been an attack.
2 Q. I'm referring to the barracks, to the military facility, the JNA
3 barracks in Prevlaka.
4 A. There's no barracks in Prevlaka.
5 Q. In 1991?
6 A. In 1991, in Prevlaka, there were the buildings that now exist did
7 not exist. It was a military barracks, not barracks.
8 Q. Okay. Were there attacks by the Croatian forces on the military
10 A. No, I'm not aware of that. No, there weren't.
11 Q. Did you hear about the problems of blocking roads, attacks on
12 military facilities and persons in the territory of Dubrovnik municipality
13 and in Herzegovina by the Croatian forces?
14 A. I don't understand. Can you repeat the question?
15 Q. Did you hear about the problems in connection with the blocking of
16 the roads, attacks on military facilities and persons, in the territory --
17 in the general area of Dubrovnik and Herzegovina, carried out by the
18 Croatian forces, the MUP and the ZNG?
19 A. I heard that obstacles were placed on the roads.
20 Q. Did you hear about attacks?
21 A. No, I didn't. I just heard that there were obstacles on the
22 roads, that roads were being destroyed.
23 Q. Do you know who Ludvig Pavlovic is? Did you hear of that name
24 ever? Let me remind you. Radusa 1972.
25 A. Ludvig Pavlovic, no. No. What happened in 1972, I don't know.
1 Q. On the 1st of October, in the evening hours, the chief of the
2 security centres of Montenegro, Ivan Jovanovic, distributed a paper
3 according to which Croats were involved in incidents around Dzermin
4 [phoen], and you said this was not a war threat. Can you please be more
5 specific as to what it said on that piece of paper?
6 A. It was a report issued by the security centre from Herceg-Novi.
7 According to this report, there were a few incidents on the border with
8 Croatia. Amongst other things, there was also an exchange of fire around
9 the village of Zvinje [phoen] and that had happened a few days before
10 that. In any case, he drafted a list of all these discords, that is,
11 incidents, which happened on the border with Croatia, which is not long.
12 It goes from Siroki Brijeg [As interpreted] to Prevlaka. This report did
13 not show that the war had begun. It just showed that there was some
14 discords and some difficulties in communication on border crossings
15 between Croatia and Montenegro.
16 Q. To be more specific: Did you hear from this Jovanovic [As
17 interpreted] or from anybody else, about a report or some information
18 which pointed to the fact that the Croatian forces had opened fire on the
19 territory of Montenegro in September 1991?
20 A. Ivanovic [As interpreted] didn't say at the time that fire was
21 opened on the territory of Montenegro. It was Herceg-Novi radio that
22 claimed that there was cannon fire opened by Croatia on the territory of
23 Montenegro. I don't believe this to this very day.
24 MS. SOMERS: Excuse me, Your Honour. Can we ask for a
25 clarification? Because we believe we heard something in B/C/S and that it
1 came out differently on the transcript. And that would be on page 47,
2 line 22 and 23, where Mr. Rodic asked about something, and the answer
3 was: "It goes from Siroki Brijeg to Prevlaka." We thought we heard a
4 different answer about -- something Brijeg, and I wondered if that could
5 be clarified, please.
6 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] On page 48, line 5.
7 MS. SOMERS: No. 47 -- excuse me, Your Honour.
8 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] It says "Herzegovina."
9 MS. SOMERS: So is that correct? I just wanted to know if that
10 stands. It's difficult, because we believe we heard something
12 JUDGE PARKER: We'll wait to see if it's possible to get an
14 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, if you allow me, I
15 believe I can clarify what Ms. Somers is referring to, page 47, line 22.
16 It says, "Siroki Brijeg," and I believe that we will all agree, including
17 Mr. Samardzic, that he said Debeli Brijeg. From Debeli Brijeg to
18 Prevlaka, not from Siroki Brijeg to Prevlaka. And I believe that this is
19 what Mr. Samardzic says, and I believe that this is what Ms. Somers is
20 referring to. That's number 1.
21 MS. SOMERS: Thank you, Your Honour. That does help us
23 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] The second thing which is also
24 wrong, that's page 48, line 5, it says: "Herzegovina radio," and
25 Mr. Samardzic said: "Herceg-Novi radio," not Herzegovina radio, but
1 Herceg-Novi radio. So can this also be taken into account, Your Honour.
2 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you very much, Mr. Petrovic. There seems to
3 be general agreement that those two names may have been wrongly recorded
4 in the first place, and we will ask the interpretation and transcript
5 people to check those matters with that clarification from Mr. Petrovic.
6 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation]
7 Q. On page 12, paragraph 4 of your statement in English, you said
8 that in Dubrovnik there were just a few not heavily armed young men, and
9 that was the only defence that the town had. On page 16, paragraph 1, you
10 say Croats practically did not have any defence forces, and what they did
11 have, they pulled out and used to defend the city of Dubrovnik.
12 On your examination-in-chief, you mentioned that your friend,
13 Hrvoje Kacic, a high Croatian official, and that his son, who was in the
14 position not to go into the army, decided not to do that, but he instead
15 decided to defend Dubrovnik. Can you then tell me: How come so many JNA
16 soldiers were killed?
17 A. At the beginning, there were no Croatian troops in Dubrovnik.
18 During the operations in Dubrovnik, a lot of Croats came to help the
19 Dubrovnik defence, and they organised themselves and defended the town.
20 Q. What forces arrived? What troops arrived, where from, and when?
21 A. I wouldn't be able to give you any detail on how the Croatian
22 command brought the troops into Dubrovnik and how they defended the town.
23 I only know that at the beginning there were no Croatian troops in
24 Dubrovnik. There were just a few Croatian soldiers. And during the
25 operations around Dubrovnik, the Croatian army grew in numbers and they
1 defended the town. That's a fact.
2 Q. When you say at the beginning there were very few troops or
3 defenders of Dubrovnik, do you know that for a fact or do you just assume
5 A. I was not in Dubrovnik, and I didn't count them. But in any case,
6 it was clear that there were no big troops in Dubrovnik at the beginning
7 of operations.
8 Q. So this is your assumption, then?
9 A. It is not just my assumption. It was obvious from the reports
10 which were sent from the front line, which were aired, not only on
11 Montenegrin TV, but also on CNN and on SkyNews. It was obvious that there
12 were no large troops there but that gradually defence was being stepped up
13 and that the town was being defended.
14 Q. Do you know anything about Croatian forces, MUP and the ZNG,
15 outside of the city walls and in the general area of Dubrovnik
17 A. There were defence forces of Dubrovnik in the territory of what we
18 call Dubrovnik municipality. The municipality of Dubrovnik overlaps with
19 the former Dubrovnik republic, and during the Dubrovnik operations, the
20 number of troops that defended the town increased.
21 Q. To be more precise: From the 1st October in Ivanica, eight
22 soldiers died in mortar fire. Who opened that fire?
23 A. I don't know that they were killed. I only heard that. On the
24 1st of October, there was a session at which nobody spoke about those
25 fallen soldiers. It was either on the 2nd or on the 3rd, or one of the
1 following days, but not on the 1st of October.
2 Q. According to you, if this is on the 2nd or on the 3rd October --
3 A. Yes, one of those days, or even later.
4 Q. Let's have it that way. However, if they died from a mortar shell
5 on either the 2nd or the 3rd of October in Ivanica, which is in the
6 territory of Bosnia and Herzegovina, how do you explain that? How do you
7 account for that? Where were the Croatian forces at the time?
8 A. They were in the territory of Dubrovnik.
9 Q. What is the territory of Dubrovnik? Do you only mean the town or
10 the general area?
11 A. I mean the general area. Somebody must have opened fire from the
12 territory of Konavle, towards Ivanica, and the shell probably crossed the
13 border of the municipality of Dubrovnik. It went all the way to the
14 municipality of Trebinje and killed some people. This is not impossible.
15 And this is more or less what happened. Croats opened fire on a JNA unit
16 and the guys were killed. I believe that that was the case. I was not
17 there, but I know that on the 2nd or on the 3rd, our lads did die, and it
18 was reported on TV.
19 Q. But in any case, they killed from the Croatian fire?
20 A. Yes. I have already confirmed that. 157 Montenegrins died during
21 the Dubrovnik operations that lasted over a period of several months.
22 Q. So we can agree then that we are not talking about just a few
23 troops with very few weapons?
24 A. What I'm saying is that these 157 didn't die at the beginning, on
25 the first or second day. That 157 lads died throughout the entire
1 Dubrovnik operation. During that operation, Dubrovnik stepped up its
2 defence gradually.
3 Q. Are you aware of the fact that during the first three days, 15
4 members of the JNA were killed?
5 A. I know that some were killed. I'm not aware of the fact that 15
6 died. They reported some numbers on TV. I don't think it was 15, but I
7 wouldn't be able to give you the exact number of the guys who were killed
8 during the first couple of days. But in any case --
9 Q. I can give you their names, and I can assure that 15 JNA soldiers
10 during the first couple of days [As interpreted].
11 A. However many died during these first days, as director of
12 Jugooceanija, I would send out people.
13 Q. Do you know when Hrvoje Kacic's son went to Dubrovnik to defend
15 A. I wouldn't know exactly, but I know that he went there
17 Q. Did he volunteer or was he a member of a military unit?
18 A. I'm sure that he was a volunteer.
19 Q. On your examination-in-chief, you mentioned the visit of several
20 foreign ambassadors who wanted to talk to General Strugar and who wanted
21 to visit the Dubrovnik front line in the theatre of war in October 1991.
22 Do you remember that?
23 A. Yes. There were some ambassadors. I was supposed to attend this
24 meeting with the ambassadors, and I didn't want to participate.
25 Q. Who was in contact with the ambassadors on behalf of the military?
1 A. I believe that it was Admiral Jokic.
2 Q. How come it was him who attended the meeting with the ambassadors?
3 How come he received them?
4 MS. SOMERS: Objection. Speculation. How would he know? How
5 would he know how -- why Admiral Jokic received them?
6 JUDGE PARKER: We will see whether the witness can offer an
7 explanation. I suspect that you are correct, but we'll see what the
8 answer is.
9 A. I don't know who was it who appointed Admiral Jokic to attend this
10 meeting with the ambassadors, but I know that Admiral Jokic held several
11 meetings with them. He even took a boat to Tivat. But he wouldn't allow
12 them to go to the Dubrovnik theatre of war. They wanted to go and see
13 Konavle. Mr. Hall [phoen], the British ambassador, and some other
14 ambassadors from Western European countries, and the deputy ambassador of
15 the United States. They all tried to enter the war area around Dubrovnik.
16 But they couldn't do that. Together with Admiral Jokic, they went to
17 Tivat in Herceg-Novi instead.
18 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation]
19 Q. When these ambassadors arrived, did you get in touch with Jokic?
20 Yes or no.
21 A. No, I didn't get in touch with him. I didn't go to any of these
22 meetings. I believe that Momir Bulatovic told me.
23 Q. That is not important. I'm trying to follow up on this. You said
24 that you knew that Jokic wouldn't take them to the front line, that he
25 took them from Tivat to Herceg-Novi and back; is that correct?
1 A. Yes. I knew he wouldn't take them to the front line.
2 Q. You also said that they didn't go anywhere, and this was confirmed
3 to you by your friend Hrvoje Kacic.
4 A. Yes. Hrvoje Kacic told me that he was not satisfied with the
5 treatment that Jokic accorded to these ambassadors.
6 Q. I'm asking you: Do you know that as ambassadors on that occasion
7 went to Dubrovnik and that they drafted a detailed written report covering
8 their visit?
9 A. No. That was on a different occasion when they were at Dubrovnik.
10 Q. I'm asking you specifically about this occasion.
11 A. On this occasion they didn't go to Dubrovnik. They went to
12 Dubrovnik on a different occasion. Allow me --
13 Q. Can you then tell us exactly what these two occasions were? Can
14 you be very precise?
15 A. The ambassadors were in Dubrovnik at the beginning of November and
16 this first occasion was in October. The ambassadors arrived on several
17 occasions. On several occasions they tried to enter the theatre of war.
18 Q. When in October?
19 A. I don't know the exact date. I believe it was the 25th of October
20 or one of these dates. That was when the first meeting was in Tivat and
21 in Herceg-Novi and on that occasion they didn't enter Dubrovnik.
22 Q. So we are talking about the time around the 25th October?
23 A. I suppose so. I don't know any details after 15 years. I can't
24 give you the exact date when it was.
25 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Rodic, could you just pause a little? The
1 translation is under pressure. They've caught up now, but if you could
2 just slow the pace.
3 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
4 JUDGE PARKER: Microphone, please, Mr. Rodic. Thank you.
5 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation]
6 Q. What I'm saying is what I said a moment ago. In October, the
7 ambassadors drew up a detailed, written report on their visit to
8 Dubrovnik, and it is my submission that your friend Hrvoje Kacic
9 misinformed you on that occasion, because there is a written report and
10 the OTP have it.
11 MS. SOMERS: Objection, Your Honour. This is testimony. This is
12 not examination.
13 JUDGE PARKER: It's ambiguous whether it's being put as a
14 statement or put as a question. I'm sorry, Ms. Somers.
15 Do you understand the point of objection, Mr. Rodic? Will you
16 make clear which way you're going. If you've got a question, put it, but
17 don't be asserting facts.
18 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation]
19 Q. Are you aware of the fact that your friend Hrvoje Kacic
20 misinformed you deliberately regarding the ambassadors' -- the foreign
21 ambassadors' visit to Dubrovnik?
22 A. I am aware that he did not misinform me. I am telling you: These
23 are two different events.
24 Q. Very well. Let us now, please, go back to your statement as it
25 relates to the meeting that took place on the 1st of October, which we
1 have already spoken about.
2 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, during the break, I
3 checked my previous submission from our last hearing, to the effect that
4 during his testimony in the Milosevic case, Mr. Samardzic categorically
5 did not correct his statement about the cabinet meeting on the 1st of
6 October in Montenegro and Admiral Jokic being there. I have a copy of the
7 relevant portion of the transcript from that testimony, where this same
8 witness, in answer to a question by the Prosecutor, Geoffrey Nice, speaks
9 about the meeting without pointing out that Admiral Jokic was not present
10 at the meeting. So there was no kind of correction whatsoever.
11 Can I have the usher's assistance, please.
12 This is from the 8th and 10th of October, 2002.
13 JUDGE PARKER: You offer these as extracts from the transcript of
14 the trial of Mr. Milosevic; is that right?
15 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] That's correct, Your Honour. The
16 transcript is dated the 8th of October, 2002.
17 Q. Mr. Samardzic, can you please go through this and tell me if you
18 see any references by yourself to Admiral Jokic, or any corrections being
19 made as to the fact that Admiral Jokic did not attend the meeting.
20 A. There is no reference to Admiral Jokic's attendance or
21 non-attendance here. However, during my testimony in the Milosevic case,
22 if I remember correctly, I said clearly that he was not there. I should,
23 however, go through the whole transcript to be able to say with any degree
24 of certainty. If you only look at this page, you can't tell. However, if
25 you go through the entire transcript, I believe you will find a reference
1 to that. I believe you will find that I said that Jokic was not there.
2 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Perhaps Ms. Somers can help us with
3 this, because she promised to go through the transcript.
4 MS. SOMERS: Objection. First of all, there is a question. This
5 is re-direct examination. I'm working from a different paginated number.
6 I'm working from the first edition of the transcript. But if Mr. Rodic is
7 going to use this, it would be very helpful, in my assertion, that he
8 actually asks what question was asked and then what answer was given, and
9 that all references that are contained in that answer are properly sourced
10 back to the other references in the transcript. This is a very misleading
11 point of cross-examination, and I will certainly explore it and attempt to
12 clarify it on redirect, but right now you're getting -- I submit the
13 Chamber is getting a very inappropriate view of what actually took place
14 in that courtroom.
15 JUDGE PARKER: What is offered at the moment, Ms. Somers, is two
16 extracts from the transcript of the 8th of October, pages 11185 and 11186.
17 The witness agrees that in those extracts, he makes no mention that
18 Admiral Jokic was not there. Mr. Rodic has asserted from the counsel
19 table that this is the -- that there is no reference anywhere in the
20 transcript. The witness says he is sure that he did, but he would need to
21 correct the whole transcript.
22 MS. SOMERS: Your Honour --
23 JUDGE PARKER: And read the whole transcript. I believe if the
24 matter is left there, the foundation is laid for your re-examination, in
25 which, if there is a very different picture, you will be able to present
2 MS. SOMERS: I will do that. Thank you. Yes, Your Honour. I
3 just wanted to make sure that the Chamber realised that the question
4 itself was not presented to the Chamber, only the answer, and the question
5 is very relevant.
6 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I made an effort to
7 extract the relevant question from the Milosevic transcript, as related to
8 the 1st of October meeting and who was present. As I promised, I did go
9 through the entire transcript, and there's not a single reference or any
10 correction as concerns the presence or absence of Admiral Jokic at the
11 meeting on the 1st of October, 1991. Along the same lines, on behalf of
12 the Defence, I can offer the entire transcript of this witness in the
13 Milosevic case. I believe, however, that this would unduly encumber the
14 transcript. Should you, nevertheless, so require, I am ready to offer the
15 entire transcript into evidence.
16 JUDGE PARKER: We ourselves would not require the entire
17 transcript. Ms. Somers has indicated that she will, in re-examination, be
18 returning to this subject.
19 The second point made by Ms. Somers is something you may be able
20 to deal with, though. She points out that you do not at the beginning of
21 this extract, you have not identified the question that is being answered.
22 And it is Ms. Somers's submission that that question affects or may affect
23 the answer that was given. So if you want to include the question at this
24 point, that could be helpful to the Chamber. Otherwise, I'm sure
25 Ms. Somers will do so when she comes to re-examine.
1 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] The question is in line 16 on page
2 11185. The question is: "Who was there? What were they talking about?"
3 JUDGE PARKER: Well, that is perhaps enough to deal with that
4 point of Ms. Somers' concern. As I've indicated, we do not require the
5 whole transcript from that trial to be tendered to us. Do you want this
6 to be marked for identification, this extract?
7 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour.
8 JUDGE PARKER: We will receive the extract from pages 11185 and
9 11186 as being marked for identification.
10 THE REGISTRAR: That will be D18.
11 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] As the witness confirmed upon
12 questioning that he knew Admiral Jokic well, in the sense of knowing him
13 personally, and that they go back to before 1991, while the Admiral was
14 the commander of the navy, or rather, the naval district in Boka, I must
15 again ask you the following question, Mr. Samardzic:
16 Q. Why did you make seven references to Admiral Jokic in your
17 statement, in different parts of your statement, as attending this
18 particular meeting, and even speaking at this meeting?
19 A. First of all, I never said that I knew him well. I said that I'd
20 met him two or three times before the war, while he was serving in Boka
21 Kotorska. That's what I said.
22 Secondly, I did not make seven references to him attending the
23 meeting. I didn't exactly count all the references, but if count we must,
24 then let us count. Can you please allow me to finish this.
25 Q. Please let's not waste time.
1 A. Nevertheless, I may have made a mistake. It was half dark, or
2 night. I made a mistake. I corrected that mistake, and it was never my
3 intention to accuse Admiral Jokic of anything that he did not do or to
4 assert that he was present when in fact he wasn't. I made a mistake that
5 I later corrected, and that's all I can tell you in this respect. The
6 mistake was not deliberate. How it came about, I can't say right now. It
7 was after I had undergone major surgery. I was sick. I said that in my
8 statement. But I did not mean harm. I made a reference to Jokic, and it
9 entered the transcript and stayed there. It's an error.
10 Q. Very well. This is what I have on your corrections, what I got
11 from the OTP. These corrections are to be made, as indicated by the
12 witness, immediately before your testimony, under item 4: Admiral Jokic
13 was not present at the extraordinary meeting of the government on the 1st
14 of October, 1991. And item 5: The witness believes that Kristo Djurovic
15 had probably been killed. What was said in connection with Jokic's
16 presence at the meeting should be ignored.
17 These are the corrections you requested immediately prior to your
18 testimony here in the Strugar case. The reference is page 12,
19 paragraph 3 -- my apologies. Page 12, paragraph 1, as indicated by the
20 OTP, the English version page 10, paragraph 4, and page 11, paragraph 6.
21 However, in addition to these two corrections on page 12, paragraph 3 of
22 the English statement, when you say that Strugar said it was a fortunate
23 circumstance that the Montenegrins would fight and the JNA would defend
24 Yugoslavia from aggression, that Dubrovnik would be liberated from the
25 Ustasha at a minimum cost. There were plenty of Ustasha there so the army
1 would have to proceed with caution, he said. You say that Jeremija,
2 Damjanovic, Jokic, and especially Babic echoed his statement, especially
3 Babic, who spoke a lot at the meeting. You never corrected this.
4 Allegedly, these words were uttered by General Strugar and repeated by
5 Admiral Jokic, which would seem to imply that he spoke at the meeting.
6 However, this has never been corrected. Please, don't try to interrupt
7 me. Do you have an answer to this, in connection with the corrections,
8 I've read out the two corrections that you made, but you made no
9 corrections regarding this.
10 A. What you just read, everything that has to do with Admiral Jokic's
11 presence has been corrected. My correction relates to the entire portion
12 of the statement as the statement relates to Admiral Jokic. Therefore,
13 it's been corrected. Perhaps you're now telling me that this specific
14 remark was not corrected, has not been corrected. But as you said
15 yourself a while ago, everything that relates to Admiral Jokic should be
16 ignored. That's what the correction said. So that's precisely how it
17 should be read.
18 Q. Was your attention drawn by the OTP to the fact that you were to
19 exclude Admiral Jokic from this alleged meeting that took place,
20 allegedly, on the 1st of October, 1991?
21 A. No one told me anything in relation to that. I said myself right
22 at the start in my testimony in the Milosevic case. I realised that an
23 error had been made, and I was very sorry about that. It has been
24 perpetuated in the transcript, and there's nothing I can do about it at
25 this point.
1 Q. Is it still your submission that you corrected this statement
2 during your testimony in the Milosevic case and clearly stated that the
3 Admiral was not present?
4 A. It's been two or three years since, and I believe that I did state
5 that. I was having an argument with Milosevic, and in the course of this
6 argument, I can't be a hundred per cent certain about this, however, I did
7 say that Admiral Jokic was not there. You keep insisting on this, but
8 your claim about the seven references is certainly not accurate.
9 Q. That's what the statement says.
10 A. Well, that's all right, then.
11 Q. Further, in relation to this story about the 30.000 Ustashe, let
12 me point this out to you again. On page 10, paragraph 5, when you speak
13 about the cabinet meeting on the 1st of October, you said that Djukanovic
14 presided over the meeting and Bulatovic was present too. Bulatovic spoke
15 about 30.000 Ustashe having attacked Montenegro and that we had to put up
16 a fight. Throughout your statement, the name of Momir Bulatovic was only
17 mentioned in connection with the making public of this number, 30.000
18 Ustashe. All other references, all additional references to civilian or
19 military personnel, you never link them up with this particular claim
20 about the 30.000 Ustashe. For the very first time in your testimony in
21 the Milosevic case, on page 11186 of the transcript, line 6, you say that
22 Bulatovic said the thing about 30.000 Ustashe and that this had been made
23 known by General Strugar. This is your first reference to General Strugar
24 in connection with Bulatovic's statement, whereas here, in this case,
25 during the examination-in-chief, and when cross-examined by myself, you
1 said that when you joined the meeting, the meeting that was already under
2 way, the first time you heard this was when General Strugar spoke about
3 the 30.000 Ustashe advancing on Montenegro. Can you please explain how
4 your statement in 2000 and in the Milosevic case, where you added the name
5 of General Strugar after that of Momir Bulatovic, and now, testifying in
6 the Strugar case, how did this come about that suddenly you claim that
7 General Strugar was the first person whom you heard talk about this?
8 A. There's no discrepancy there. I'll say this again. When I came
9 to the meeting, the meeting was halfway through, or maybe even into the
10 second half.
11 Q. We know that. But can you explain these obvious discrepancies?
12 A. I don't see any obvious discrepancies there.
13 Q. Very well. That's an answer too. That's an answer.
14 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Can I have the usher's assistance,
15 please. This is another excerpt from the transcript of the testimony of
16 this witness in the Milosevic case.
17 Q. On page 11433, on re-examination by the Prosecution, line 5, to
18 Mr. Geoffrey Nice's question as to what the approach of General Strugar to
19 this meeting was, the witness answered: "I heard Strugar, and he
20 confirmed -- I heard Strugar confirm Bulatovic." Again, this means that
21 Bulatovic said this, and then General Strugar confirmed Bulatovic's words.
22 Do you now notice any difference?
23 A. I don't, because both of them spoke. First one of them spoke and
24 then the other. Both of them spoke. I did not make a distinction between
25 what the two of them said. Strugar said one thing, Bulatovic said another
1 thing. Strugar continued, Bulatovic followed up. They were the ones who
2 spoke that evening. And this is what transpires from the transcript.
3 When I testified in the Milosevic case, I did not want to point out
4 Strugar as opposed to Bulatovic or vice versa. I just said what I heard.
5 Q. How come that in the first statement that you gave to the
6 Prosecution you never mentioned having heard anything like that from
7 General Strugar?
8 A. It went without saying. I mentioned Strugar as somebody who was
9 there on behalf of the army, the main person there, and everything applied
10 to Strugar. In any case, when I gave my statement -- allow me. When I
11 gave my statement in Sydney, when I testified in the Milosevic case, I did
12 not make any distinctions. You are trying to make -- to have me make
13 distinctions. At that moment, I did not pay any attention as to who was
14 the first to speak, whether it was Strugar or whether it was Bulatovic.
15 You may draw your own conclusions. I only said what I heard.
16 Q. What I'm saying is that in your statement given in 2001, you
17 didn't mention Pavle Strugar within that context. The statement, I'm
18 sorry, was given in 2000. And you never mention Pavle Strugar saying that
19 there were 30.000 Ustashe. This is what I don't find in the statement,
20 and you cannot explain to me how come you didn't say that to the
21 investigators in the year 2000.
22 A. At that time, I explained what I'd heard. I'd heard that 30.000
23 Ustashe were advancing towards Montenegro, and that was the main fact that
24 I said to the persons who arrived to interview me in Sydney. And I don't
25 see any difference between that and between what I said later on and
1 between what I'm saying now.
2 Q. There are very obvious differences, and I am saying that you're
3 not telling the truth.
4 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, can this page 11433 be
5 given an exhibit number, as a Defence exhibit.
6 JUDGE PARKER: It will be received as an exhibit.
7 THE REGISTRAR: That will be D19.
8 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation]
9 Q. Is it true that you said during your testimony that three Britons
10 asked to get in contact with General Strugar and Admiral Jokic? If I'm
11 not mistaken, this was in November 1991.
12 A. Yes. There were two or three. I forget how many.
13 Q. Just briefly, please. Is it true that you have also said that you
14 asked Pavle Bulatovic, foreign minister at the time, to enable you a
15 telephone contact, and he put you through in your office, and then you
16 spoke directly with Admiral Jokic? Is that correct?
17 A. Yes, it is.
18 Q. During your conversation with Admiral Jokic, did you say that in a
19 telephone conversation, Admiral Jokic had told you that General Strugar
20 was standing next to him; is that correct?
21 A. Yes, it is.
22 Q. I have to check whether on that occasion, did you personally talk
23 to General Strugar?
24 A. No, I didn't. But I did through Admiral Jokic.
25 Q. Please, I'm going to come to that. Rest assured, I'm going to
1 come to that.
2 In your statement, on page 22, paragraph 4, you say as
3 follows: "In the Ministry of Defence I was given the telephone numbers
4 for Strugar and Jokic, and I called them without any problems." So you
5 were not put through by Pavle Bulatovic, the minister of the interior.
6 You got the numbers from the Ministry of Defence, and you yourself rang
7 them. What is true? Is what you said in 2000 or what you're saying now?
8 A. In the year 2000, a mistake was made.
9 Q. Is that then another mistake?
10 A. Yes. There are a lot of mistakes.
11 Q. Very well. This is also an answer. Thank you.
12 During that contact with Jokic, did you in any way talk to Strugar
13 and Jokic, or did you just talk to Jokic?
14 A. I only talked to Jokic.
15 Q. On the same page, page 22, paragraph 4, you say as follows:
16 "Based on the short conversation that I had with the two of them, it was
17 clear that military operations were not going well. In any case, there
18 was no longer the impertinence that they displayed at the meeting held on
19 the 1st of October."
20 Are you using a plural here, indicating that you spoke to the both
21 of them about the military operations and their course, and that in the
22 conversation with the two of them, there was no longer the impertinence
23 that they displayed on the 1st of October?
24 A. I am not with you. I don't know what you're saying.
25 Q. What I'm saying is that in this statement to the Prosecution, you
1 made it believe that you talked to both Jokic and Strugar.
2 A. No. It says clearly here that I only spoke to Admiral Jokic and
3 that through Admiral Jokic I also talked to Strugar. I didn't speak
4 directly to Strugar. His thoughts were conveyed to me by Admiral Jokic.
5 And if you will allow me. What I said last time, I'd like to repeat now.
6 Admiral Jokic told me: General Strugar and I are asking you this and
7 that, and so on and so forth.
8 Q. Very well, then. Thank you.
9 A. This is what I said, and this is what happened.
10 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] May we have the usher's assistance
11 with distributing this document? I have been quoting different paragraphs
12 from the English statement of this witness given to the Prosecution in the
13 year 2000, so I would like everybody in the courtroom to have it, in order
14 to be able to follow it with a greater ease.
15 JUDGE PARKER: Are you proposing, Mr. Rodic, to be dealing with
16 more of the statement, or have you concluded?
17 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] No, I'm not finished with this
18 statement. There will be a few more questions regarding the parts of the
19 statement given by this witness.
20 JUDGE PARKER: Because at the moment, Mr. Rodic, can I say, this
21 is very much the discussion we had a few days ago with another witness. I
22 think you have very clearly put to the witness those parts from this
23 statement which you say differ from his evidence, and he has either agreed
24 that it's different or he's disagreed, but there's really no need for us
25 to see the statement to identify the differences. They've been made clear
1 by you. And it's not useful simply to tender the whole statement. It's
2 not necessary to reinforce what you've made in your cross-examination. I
3 would expect that if you continue with any other matters from the
4 statement, it will be the same with them. You make clear what was said in
5 the statement, the witness either agrees that he's right or he was wrong,
6 and that's enough for our purposes.
7 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] I agree with you, Your Honour. Thank
8 you very much.
9 Q. Mr. Samardzic, in your statement, on page 22, paragraph 4, you
10 say: "On the 1st of October --" I apologise. Not on the 1st of
11 October. "Jokic asked me whether we could recreate the Republic of
12 Dubrovnik. I told him that it was not possible at all, but I believe that
13 this shows to what extent were these people far away from the reality.
14 But he was so convinced that the Greater Serbia would be created that he
15 would not accept it to withdraw from Dubrovnik without having gained some
16 territories first. He knew that I was against an attack, and I believe
17 that he thought I could help them save face."
18 So when you spoke with the OTP for the first time, you did not
19 mention General Strugar as sitting next to Jokic and asking you questions
20 as well. How do you explain that?
21 A. As far as I remember, I said for the purpose of that statement
22 that Admiral Jokic told me: I'm here together with General Strugar, and I
23 and General Strugar would like to know this and that about the Dubrovnik
24 Republic. And I believe that that is exactly what I said to the OTP.
25 Q. So again the OTP has made another mistake and they have put words
1 into your mouth?
2 A. No, they didn't do that. I don't know what you are reading from.
3 I know what I said to the OTP. I told them that General Strugar had also
4 been there.
5 Q. Mr. Samardzic, you have read this statement, you have put your
6 signature on it, indicating that you agree with everything that it says in
7 this statement, and all of a sudden it turns out that there are so many
8 mistakes in this statement.
9 A. No, this is not true. I don't know what you are reading from.
10 There are 35 pages of this statement.
11 Q. We are on page 22, paragraph 4. Can you please look at it and
12 tell me whether this paragraph differs from your testimony today.
13 A. Page 22?
14 Q. Yes.
15 A. The English version?
16 Q. Yes, the English version. Paragraph 4, which starts with the
17 words: "In the Ministry of Defence, I was given the telephone numbers for
18 Strugar and Jokic."
19 A. It says here: "I was given the telephone numbers for Strugar and
21 Q. Correct.
22 A. Yes. So what is not clear? What bothers you here? What is the
23 difference, according to you?
24 Q. Does this differ from your testimony before this Trial Chamber?
25 A. I don't see any differences.
1 Q. Does it say here that Jokic told you during this telephone
2 conversation that General Strugar was sitting next to him and that both of
3 them were interested in the creation of the Dubrovnik Republic? Does it
4 say anywhere in your statement that this would be the case?
5 A. It says here that this is Jokic's and Strugar's telephone and that
6 Jokic asked me about the Dubrovnik Republic, and I confirmed that
7 yesterday when I gave my testimony.
8 Q. Here it says Strugar's and Jokic's phone, and now say that you
9 talked to Jokic.
10 A. That's correct. I stand by that.
11 Q. To the best of your knowledge, were they both using the same
12 phone? Were they in the same room?
13 A. No, but this was merely an addition to my testimony two days ago.
14 This was an addition I made. I said Jokic told me: General Strugar and I
15 would like your opinion on this or that. Nothing else.
16 Q. At that time, do you know where Jokic was physically when you made
17 the call to him?
18 A. No.
19 Q. Do you know at all where in the Dubrovnik and Herzegovina theatre
20 of war, including Montenegro, where each of these people were, Strugar and
22 A. No, but Jokic told me: I am present, and so is General Strugar.
23 I got put through for the British people to ask to meet him. However,
24 Admiral Jokic told me: General Strugar cannot see anyone. And then he
25 went on to speak about the Dubrovnik Republic. That's the truth of it.
1 I'm not sure if everything was explained with sufficient clarity in 2000.
2 Maybe not all of these things have been written down. But this is an
3 addition I'm trying to make about the course of our conversation.
4 Q. Are you perhaps tailoring your testimony to suit your own needs in
5 your testimony against General Strugar?
6 A. God forbid. I have nothing personally against General Strugar to
7 be tailoring this testimony to suit any needs. I'm merely telling you the
8 truth and there's nothing else. I am certainly not doing any of the
9 things that you're insinuating.
10 Q. But your statement is full of errors.
11 A. That may well be the case, but what you're talking about now
12 contains no errors whatsoever. Here you have Strugar's and Jokic's phone
13 number. I spoke on the phone to Admiral Jokic. And according to what
14 Admiral Jokic said, at least, General Strugar was sitting next to him.
15 There's no discrepancy there. You can draw as many conclusions as you
16 like based on that, but that's how it was.
17 Q. That's your view.
18 A. That may be my view, but what you are presenting is your own view
20 Q. On page 7, passage 5 of the English statement, you say: "I told
21 Bulatovic that we should convince Croatia that we have no hostile
22 intentions about Croatia. He agreed and proposed that I write a letter
23 that he would later signed and that I could then bring to Zagreb. I
24 visited Zagreb in the summer of 1991, and I met several Croatian
25 government officials, including President Tudjman. I tried to convince
1 them that Montenegro was no threat to Croatia and that our friendship was
2 a long one."
3 Is this correct? Briefly, please, yes or no.
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Thank you. On page 10, passage 3, you say: "While I was in The
6 Hague...", the reference is to the 7th of September, 1991, "...Hrvoje
7 Kacic, a friend of mine and a member of the foreign policy committee of
8 the Croatian parliament, told me that the JNA would attack Dubrovnik. I
9 refused to believe this and I tried to convince him that this could never
11 Is that correct?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. Page 10, passage 4, you say: "We returned to The Hague on the
14 12th of September. I gave a speech, saying that Montenegro was no threat
15 to Croatia, which I sincerely believed at the time."
16 Is that correct?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Page 12, passage 3: "On the 1st of October, 1991, Lord
19 Carrington's assistant, the Dutch diplomat Henri Wejnaendts came to
20 Podgorica to check whether any Montenegrins had left for the Dubrovnik
21 front to fight there. I tried to convince him that Montenegro could never
22 attack Croatia which I sincerely believed, and everything I told him was
23 in good faith."
24 Is that correct?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Page 10, passage 3, you say: "I persistently claimed that
2 Montenegro would never attack Croatia. I was probably deeply convinced,
3 having made such promises to Kacic and Wejnaendts. I did it in good
5 Is that correct?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Did Montenegro attack Croatia or not?
8 A. Yes, it did.
9 Q. You are familiar with the initiative by the Montenegrin Assembly
10 presented in October to the Croatian parliament concerning the borders
11 between Montenegro and Croatia in relation to the conclusions adopted by
12 the Montenegrin Assembly. This has been tendered into evidence. These
13 are conclusions dated the 8th of October. You were asked this during the
15 A. Yes. I was the one who actually drafted the document.
16 Q. Very well. In the statement of reasons, passage 2, it reads: "It
17 has been stated that the Republic of Montenegro is not at war with the
18 Republic of Croatia, nor has any claim on its territory, the reservists
19 from Montenegro in the Dubrovnik area and Herzegovina are members of the
20 JNA. The JNA is in charge of their deployment and their presence there.
21 Therefore, it can't be stated that Montenegro has carried out any acts of
22 aggression against Croatia."
23 This is from the statement of reasons; is that correct?
24 A. Yes, it is.
25 Q. I'll go on with this to remind you. You're probably aware of
1 this. In Zarko Domljan's answer on the 15th of October, 1992, in the
2 Croatian parliament, Zarko Domljan is addressing the president, saying --
3 first of all, he confirms that he has received these documents
4 entitled "initiative," the statement of reasons, and the conclusions
5 adopted by the Montenegrin parliament on the 8th of October, 1991. He
6 states: "Certainly, there would be a more favourable climate for
7 negotiations and for this initiative had the initiative been submitted
8 before the beginning of the aggression against the Republic of Croatia
9 launched from the territory of Montenegro. I have to state this with a
10 great deal of regret," he says.
11 In passage 3, it says: "In the conclusions of the parliament
12 dated the 8th of October, 1991, the Croatian parliament did not name the
13 Republic of Montenegro as the aggressor, but rather, the Republic of
14 Serbia and the so-called JNA, or whatever remained of it."
15 How come the Croats don't agree, the Croats who purportedly were
16 under threat from an aggression by Montenegro? They disagree. They are
17 the ones telling you about the JNA, about the federal organs and about how
18 the country is supposed to work.
19 A. These are documents by which we are trying to re-establish peace.
20 Q. I know that, but please tell me one thing: The Croats are here
21 clearly telling you that Montenegro carried out no acts of aggression
22 against Croatia.
23 A. No. It was pursuant to an intervention by Hrvoje Kacic. They
24 left out the part saying that Montenegro was the aggressor. I have
25 done -- I did everything within my power to not have Montenegro included
1 as an aggressor. They omitted this on purpose, in order to enable
2 negotiations between Montenegro and Croatia and in order to re-establish
3 peace. This is an exchange of diplomatic notes, aimed at re-establishing
4 peace. Momir Bulatovic, Milo Djukanovic and myself, the Montenegrin
5 government, made an effort here to stop the war operations that were under
6 way at the time. There's no discrepancy and no contradiction there at
7 all, as you're trying to show. Please allow me. These are documents that
8 I drafted myself, and I tried to prove that Montenegro was not at war,
9 although it was. There were reservists from Montenegro in Dubrovnik,
10 there was fighting around Dubrovnik, and it was very difficult to prove
11 that Montenegro was not at war. And yet, the parliament tried to find
12 some sort of a link in order to enable us to have negotiations.
13 Q. Tell me, please: Any paramilitary unit from the territory of
14 Montenegro, I mean the JNA, the corps, the operations group, the army,
15 whatever, can it just completely of its own accord leave for Croatian
16 territory and carry out operation, just like that?
17 A. What do you mean, "of its own accord"?
18 Q. Of its own accord, pursuant to its own initiative, an initiative
19 provided, for example, by General Strugar or as ordered by a politician,
20 for example, Momir Bulatovic, who was then Prime Minister. Can they
21 mobilise a JNA unit?
22 A. No. No, they can't. General Strugar did not move a unit as
23 ordered by Momir Bulatovic. Momir Bulatovic did not have the power in
24 Montenegro at that time to order the army to move on Dubrovnik or to stay
25 where it was. General Strugar had been ordered by the General Staff of
1 the Yugoslav army. The presidency of Yugoslavia and Slobodan Milosevic.
2 That was the chain of command.
3 Q. I'm not trying to assume that there was a different chain of
4 command. I know how it worked.
5 A. I too know how it worked at the time and what the chain of command
6 was as regards the attack on Dubrovnik. Dubrovnik was attacked by the JNA
7 from the territory of Montenegro and by deploying reservists from
8 Montenegro. That's the truth of the matter and there's no way to avoid
10 Q. These reservists from Montenegro, regular soldiers and reservists
11 from Montenegro, as well as reservists from Serbia, regular soldiers from
12 Serbia, from Albania, Muslims, were they all part of the JNA?
13 A. Yes, of course.
14 Q. Based on the fact that Montenegrin reservists were part of the
15 JNA, is that what you base your claim on that Montenegro attacked Croatia?
16 Is that what you're saying?
17 A. No, that's not what I'm saying.
18 Q. But you did say that a while ago.
19 A. That's not precisely what I said. Montenegro carried out an
20 attack on Croatia by using all the units that it had. The Territorial
21 Defence, the reserve forces, all these were used to attack Dubrovnik, and
22 that was the fact. That's what happened.
23 Q. The Territorial Defence is part of the armed forces of the SFRY
24 and under the purview of the unified command; isn't that correct?
25 A. It's under the command of both the Republic and the armed forces
1 of Yugoslavia.
2 Q. To put it simply: Who runs the show?
3 A. The General Staff. That's for sure.
4 Q. Thank you very much.
5 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Rodic, have you reached the conclusion, or
6 nearly the conclusion, of your cross-examination?
7 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. I have just a very
8 few questions left.
9 JUDGE PARKER: We'll sit on longer, then, and finish them.
10 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
11 Q. A while ago I quoted your statement. You agreed that you spoke
12 and that you tried to convince different people in different positions
13 that Montenegro would not attack Croatia. This, however, did happen, the
14 aggression, as you call it. Therefore, my question to you is: Why did
15 you not hand in your resignation? Why did you not step down as foreign
16 minister? You had been let down because you, in your capacity as foreign
17 minister, put in an effort to convince different people in different
18 positions that no such war would happen.
19 Q. Please, I am asking you at that time, at that time, according to
20 you, on the 1st of October, the whole thing began. Why, as soon as you
21 saw that -- what you told all those people was not true, why did you not
23 A. Because I believed that I would be able to make a difference, to
24 help stop the war, that I could in some way stop the hostilities around
25 Dubrovnik. I stayed around for a while, but as soon as I realised that
1 there was nothing I could do, I resigned.
2 Q. Very well. On page 14, passage 2 of your statement, we have the
3 following statement: "At the time when, on the 4th of October, the next
4 government meeting was held, I was already strongly opposed to war. I
5 believed that the only honourable thing for me to do was to step down as
6 government minister. I spoke about this to my good friend, Hrvoje Kacic,
7 and he pleaded with me not to resign, not to step down. He said, word for
8 word: Please, in God's name, don't do this. He believed that I would
9 perhaps be able to affect the course of events."
10 My question is: On the 4th of October, there was no government
11 meeting, which clearly transpires from the minutes that we have seen.
12 Secondly, was it only Hrvoje Kacic that influenced you to remain
13 in your position by saying: Please, in God's name, don't do this? Or did
14 you have anyone over in Montenegro also to consult on this matter?
15 A. I had this conversation with Hrvoje Kacic, but he was certainly
16 not the only person who contributed to my decision not to resign right
17 away. The situation was difficult, and it was necessary that I remain in
18 my position to try to help as much as I could do put an end to
19 hostilities. And so I did. The document you're referring to now are
20 exactly the initiative that we tried to have at that time.
21 Q. The same page, paragraph 3, page 14 of the English statement, you
22 say: "However, at the meeting held on the 4th of October, I expressed my
23 opposition to war in no uncertain terms. However, no one really seemed
24 interested in what I had to say. In their eyes, everything was running
1 You opposed war, and yet, at a government meeting on the 4th of
2 October, we see that no such meeting took place on that date. What can
3 you say about that?
4 A. The meeting was held. That's for sure. The fact that you don't
5 have the minutes certainly doesn't concern me. That's your own problem.
6 Meetings were held very frequently in those days, and they weren't weekly
7 meetings, but rather, every two or three days, or perhaps on a daily basis
8 there was a government meeting. I could not attend all the meetings, just
9 some of the meetings, and I would normally come halfway through the
10 meeting, as I said.
11 Q. Tell me briefly, please: When the war started, as you say, on the
12 1st of October, when and at which specific meeting of the government did
13 you first speak out against war and express your opposition? Can you
14 remember that?
15 A. Yes. Yes, I can. I spoke at each and every meeting.
16 Q. Which ones?
17 A. The 4th, the 7th, those meetings.
18 Q. Same page, passage 4, you say: "At the next meeting, on the 7th of
19 October, 1991, the same things were reiterated. Also at that meeting, or
20 the previous meeting, the issue of Prevlaka was brought up and used as an
21 excuse for attack; is that correct?
22 A. Starting on the 7th, a discussion began surrounding Prevlaka, and
23 there was a difference of opinions. People had different positions.
24 Q. That's all right. I'm not interested in that.
25 Page 15, passage 4,, you say: "I heard about many other incidents
1 from ministers who shared my disgust for what was going on and who also
2 believed that this was a disgrace for Montenegro."
3 Is that correct?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Can you please tell me: Your purported opposition to war on
6 several occasions, why did you not resign at that point, when you realised
7 that no one was taking you into account?
8 A. I'll try to avoid repetition. I remained in my position because I
9 believed that I could help to stop the war, and that's why I worked on the
10 initiative that you have mentioned. This initiative got off the ground
11 quite well, in fact. Why the whole thing was suddenly stopped, well,
12 that's a different issue.
13 Q. When was the initiative stopped? When was it curtailed?
14 A. It was on the 20th of October or thereabouts. I can't remember
15 the exact date. Following Lord Carrington's proposal. Slobodan
16 Milosevic --
17 Q. You're talking about October 1991?
18 A. Yes. Yes. That's the period of time that I'm referring to. I
19 was to go to Zagreb, but Bulatovic, pursuant to orders from Belgrade no
20 doubt, prevented me from going, and that's when the initiative ground to a
21 halt. In a different way, it continued in The Hague, when we met
22 President Tudjman. Therefore, this initiative was pursued with great
24 Q. And when did this meeting with President Tudjman take place?
25 A. At some point in October, following the plenary in The Hague.
1 That was after the 18th of October, when Milosevic refused Lord
2 Carrington's plan. And unbeknownst to Milosevic, we met President Tudjman
3 in an tempt to reach some sort of agreement concerning Prevlaka.
4 Q. Let's not go into that now.
5 A. But you're asking me.
6 Q. I only wanted to know about the time frame.
7 A. It was on the 18th of October, I believe, 1991.
8 Q. And when did you resign?
9 A. I handed in my resignation on the 26th of May, 1992.
10 Q. Why did it take you so long from the interruption of the
12 A. This was not only about the initiative, but all the other
13 activities aimed at stopping the bloodshed around Dubrovnik and in the
14 whole of Yugoslavia.
15 Q. In your statement, on page 20, paragraph 3, it says: "On the 26th
16 of May, 1992, Djukanovic received my resignation to the position of the
17 foreign minister in the government. I knew that they were going to
18 replace me anyway. However, Djukanovic did not react to my resignation,
19 and nothing was done to find a replacement for me."
20 Would you not find that double-faced? You knew that you would be
21 replaced anyway, then you resigned. Eventually you were not displaced. It
22 was only in August that your resignation was accepted.
23 A. This is no hypocrisy. You say I was being hypocritical. I have
24 the text of this resignation, both English and B/C/S. I handed it over to
25 Djukanovic, and the Assembly accepted my resignation at the end of July,
1 when a new minister was appointed. I was [indiscernible]. From the month
2 of May, I had no duties in Montenegro at all.
3 Q. And at the end, let me ask you: Is there any reason of private or
4 any other nature, because of which during your testimony, especially in
5 respect of General Strugar, you put forward various speculations,
6 differences in your testimony, as opposed to your statement? Is there any
7 such reason?
8 A. No, there is no reason at all. This is just a provocation on your
9 part. I don't have anything against General Strugar. I only testified
10 against the vandalism around Dubrovnik, the destruction of the town, the
11 plunder that took place in Konavle, and the shame that happened to
12 Montenegro. I have nothing against General Strugar. On the contrary; I
13 know that he comes from a very honest family, a family that gave lives for
14 the freedom of Yugoslavia. And I'm very, very sorry that I have to
15 testify against him in the first place.
16 Q. Bearing in mind the discrepancies between your statement and your
17 testimony before this Trial Chamber, and it's Trial Chamber in the
18 Milosevic case, bearing in mind that differences between your two written
19 statements, the first one to the OTP and the second one to the OTP, and
20 there are very many such differences and major differences, I am saying
21 that you have not been telling the truth in respect of General Strugar.
22 Your Honour, I have no further questions.
23 MS. SOMERS: There is no second statement to the OTP. There is
24 only the one statement, the 35-page one.
25 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you. Thank you, Mr. Rodic, for your
2 MR. RODIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
3 JUDGE PARKER: We will now break for 20 minutes.
4 --- Recess taken at 12.46 p.m.
5 --- On resuming at 1.11 p.m.
6 JUDGE PARKER: Ms. Somers.
7 Re-examined by Ms. Somers:
8 Q. Mr. Samardzic, where is the General Staff located?
9 A. The General Staff is located in Belgrade.
10 Q. When you were asked in the Milosevic case about the meeting on 1st
11 of October, where I believe the Defence has presented page 11185, the
12 question was put to you: "Who was there? What was discussed?" Did
13 anyone ask you -- did anyone ask you about any particular names or did you
14 simply volunteer whatever came out? Is that the total question, who was
15 there and what was discussed? Do you remember that?
16 A. Are you referring to the Milosevic case, when I was cross-examined
17 by Mr. Milosevic?
18 Q. No. This is Mr. Nice. This is your direct examination. A
19 question was put to you: "Who was there? What was discussed?" And
20 perhaps since it has been presented to the Chamber, in the interests of
21 time, I would just ask you if there was any second thought about your
22 answer. You said: "I came to the meeting late. I wasn't there from the
23 beginning, but towards the end, because President Bulatovic had sent me
24 with Lord Carrington's deputy," et cetera, et cetera. "So when I came
25 into the hall, I was quite shocked. I had never seen a meeting of that
1 kind. There were about 8 military persons, three or four generals at
2 least, wearing war uniforms, and they were sitting at the tables that we
3 would usually sit at when we would have government meetings."
4 Now, did you see any need to mention specific names in response to
5 that question?
6 A. No, I did not have any reason to do that. There were generals,
7 and I confirmed that to Mr. Nice.
8 Q. Thank you very much.
9 A. And I said that this was the meeting --
10 Q. Thank you. Now, you indicated that when you met with the Office
11 of the Prosecution before the testimony in the Milosevic case, you brought
12 to the attention of representatives that Admiral Jokic was not at this
13 meeting, that there was a mistake in the statement. That's what you said,
14 isn't it?
15 A. Yes. I made a mistake.
16 Q. And once you told the Prosecution that, you did not at any time in
17 the course of your testimony say that Admiral Jokic was at that meeting,
18 did you?
19 A. No, I didn't.
20 Q. [Previous translation continues]... He was not, was he?
21 A. The truth is that he wasn't there, and I corrected that as soon as
22 I was able to do that. I corrected it, and I continue to claim that
23 Admiral Jokic was not present at that meeting.
24 Q. Thank you. But you didn't even have to mention his name, because
25 you had already indicated he wasn't there; is our understanding correct?
1 A. Absolutely correct. I said once that he had not been there, and
2 that would suffice, I suppose.
3 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Petrovic.
4 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] I apologise for this inference. It
5 is very important when he said that, whether he said that at the trial,
6 during the pre-trial, as we have been listening for days now, or whether
7 he said it at some other unidentified occasion. I think that this would
8 be a fair question. It transpires that this is either not important at
9 all or --
10 JUDGE PARKER: Or critical.
11 Could you be specific in your question, Ms. Somers.
12 MS. SOMERS:
13 Q. Did the Prosecution ask you to come and say: By the way, I wanted
14 to tell you in Court, or I needed to tell you in Court, that Admiral Jokic
15 was not there? Or did you just tell the Prosecution and leave it to the
17 A. As soon as I spotted the mistake, I said that Admiral Jokic was
18 not present. That was at the first opportunity. And I repeat that
19 Admiral Jokic --
20 Q. To the Prosecution; is that correct?
21 A. Yes, that's correct.
22 Q. And if you were not asked that in Court, if you were not asked
23 that in Court, did you have to volunteer it, as far as you knew?
24 A. I did not volunteer any information, but as soon as I was asked
25 this question --
1 MS. SOMERS: Thank you very much.
2 JUDGE PARKER: Ms. Somers, for my sake, as well as Mr. Petrovic,
3 could it be clear whether these answers were directed to the visit on this
4 occasion to The Hague --
5 MS. SOMERS: Yes, I'm sorry.
6 JUDGE PARKER: Or the earlier.
7 MS. SOMERS: No.
8 Q. Mr. Samardzic, you and I are speaking now of when you came to
9 The Hague to testify. That's what I'm talking about. When you came to
10 The Hague in 2002, in October, to testify, this is the time frame; is that
12 A. Yes. In the year 2000, I gave my statement in Sydney. Then I
13 came here and I testified in the Milosevic case.
14 Q. But when you corrected, and I believe this is what His Honour
15 Judge Parker wants to make sure. When you told the Office of the
16 Prosecution people that there was a mistake, that was in 2002, when you
17 came to testify, wasn't it?
18 A. Yes. And I said clearly that a mistake had been made.
19 Q. Thank you. And the way that was handled was you were not asked
20 about Admiral Jokic at the meeting, and you didn't say he was at the
21 meeting, did you?
22 A. It's correct.
23 Q. Between 2000, when you met with the various personnel, not just
24 the Office of the Prosecution, you indicated that there were some -- I
25 believe host country officials present, which is common when a host
1 country has an interview taken, did you have any contact with the Office
2 of the Prosecutor between then and, let's say, when you came to testify in
4 A. No. The contacts that I had with the OTP were in Sydney in 2000,
5 and then again when I came here on two occasions.
6 Q. And nothing in between, or at least nothing of consequence in
8 A. I don't understand what you're saying.
9 Q. I'm so sorry. Between 2000, when you spoke with the various law
10 enforcement personnel in Sydney, and 2002, when you testified, did you
11 have any contact or meaningful contact with the Office of the Prosecution,
12 between that time period?
13 A. No, I didn't have any special contacts, as far as I remember.
14 Q. I'm so sorry. Did you even look at a statement? Did you even
15 pick it up? Did you have it?
16 A. I had the statement that was drafted in the year 2000. The
17 statement existed. And I immediately spotted some mistakes, and later on
18 when I arrived here in 2002, I pointed to those mistakes when I spoke with
19 the representatives representing Mr. Nice. I told them that there were
20 mistakes and that I would like to correct them.
21 Q. Thank you. Now, the statement that you read through, or the
22 statement that you were asked about today was in the English language, was
23 it not?
24 A. No. It was translated from the Serbo-Croatian to the counsel, and
25 I have before me an English text. And there are differences in the
1 translation from English into Serbo-Croatian.
2 Q. The statement that was done in Australia was done in English; is
3 that correct?
4 A. Yes. The one that was drafted in Australia was in English. And
5 here I have received a text in Serbo-Croatian, and I notice some
6 discrepancies between the original and the translation.
7 Q. So the first time you saw your own native-tongue version of the
8 statement, in other words, Serbo-Croatian, was in 2002, when you came to
10 A. Yes. I saw the final Serbo-Croatian text when I arrived here. In
11 2000, there were questions in English. I did not have a Serbo-Croatian
12 text in front of me. Even in 2002 I was looking at the English text.
13 Q. And although you have a facility to speak English on a certain
14 level, would you characterise your primary linguistic knowledge as being
15 in Serbo-Croatian? Is that your mother tongue? Or Montenegrin, as you
16 may have referred to it?
17 A. I speak Montenegrin, which is not identical to the Serbo-Croatian,
18 or Croatian and Serbian. That's one thing. Secondly, the statement that
19 I gave in Sydney was in English, which is -- my English is limited. There
20 were some language barriers between me and Mr. Williamson. Mr. Williamson
21 has an accent, a bit different.
22 Q. Thank you very much. Thank you. Now, before, before you were
23 even asked to put your initials on a statement, you had to go through it,
24 but did you go through it in English or did someone read it to you? Do
25 you remember?
1 A. I was supposed to read it in English. It was in English. I
2 accepted it as such. I was not very attentive. And that's how things
4 Q. [Previous translation continues]... not your native tongue?
5 A. No, it's not my native tongue. I was just out of the hospital,
6 and certainly there were some errors.
7 Q. Now, there were -- and you have been given an opportunity to
8 correct those errors, have you not, since you've come to The Hague, either
9 in 2002 or now?
10 A. There was an opportunity now, and now is when I pointed out
11 certain mistakes. I didn't consider them very important. But it turned
12 out in the end that there were many more mistakes than I originally
14 Q. And then 2002, to the extent you could, you pointed out certain
15 mistakes, including the fact that you said Admiral Jokic was not at that
16 meeting on 1 October; right?
17 A. Yes. This is completely correct. That's what I pointed out when
18 I spoke to the investigators. And I believe I said the same thing on
19 cross-examination by Mr. Milosevic.
20 Q. And if an initial error is made with sort of the team of Strugar
21 and Jokic appearing in one place with reference to a particular meeting,
22 did you find it -- that same mistake carried through every time Strugar
23 was mentioned, at least in terms of that meeting, that, for whatever
24 reason, Jokic's name got added to it?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Thank you.
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Thank you. Just a quick bit of information. Can you just tell
4 us: At the meeting in Sydney, how many people -- were people talking so
5 that there was a lot of conversation coming from different directions?
6 A. Yes. There were several people present, and many different
7 questions were asked and facts put forward. It is only natural that
8 errors occurred such as the one which turned up in the transcript.
9 Q. Excuse me a second. In terms of any discussions with relation to
10 Admiral Jokic, you indicated in the Milosevic case --
11 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Petrovic.
12 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] My apologies to Ms. Somers for
13 interrupting. I just want to ask a question. This is the first time
14 we're facing a situation like this, and there's one thing I want to know:
15 how the Chamber feels about this. When re-examining a witness, is the OTP
16 entitled to ask leading questions, or do we still abide by the same Rule
17 as applies to the examination-in-chief? I want to know about the
18 established practice and about the Chamber's view on this. Therefore, we
19 want to find out if these leading questions asked by the OTP right now by
20 my learned friend and colleague are allowed or not.
21 JUDGE PARKER: Do you want to put any submission, Ms. Somers?
22 MS. SOMERS: I would, Your Honour. Thank you. I think if I had
23 to take -- first of all, I would ask for some latitude with this witness,
24 given the amount of time he's been on the stand and given the fact that
25 if I had to go back and cite every single page or every single
1 reference, we would have an interminable examination. I think there's no
2 abusive practice, in that these questions were effectively raised during
3 cross, and I'm trying to get a clarification so that the Chamber's
4 concerns, which were noted, are addressed. I have to direct his attention
5 to certain matters anyway, and it may -- it may end up that it comes off
6 perhaps appearing to be leading, when in fact he may have the answer
7 directly coming out of his own mouth. But I would ask for, if the
8 Chamber is viewing it in this direction, some latitude here. I think it
9 would be warranted in this circumstance.
10 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Petrovic, the normal position is leading
11 questions are not appropriate in re-examination. It is necessary, though,
12 for speed and everybody's convenience, for the counsel to direct the
13 attention of the witness to particular issues or particular answers that
14 were given in the course of cross-examination. And in that respect, there
15 is often an appearance of leading. But having got the witness's attention
16 directed to the issue that will be the subject of the question, the
17 question then should not be a leading question. Ms. Somers has been
18 sliding either side of the line there, as she has gone along, and I'm sure
19 with your intervention she will be more conscious of keeping on the right
20 side of the line.
21 MS. SOMERS: Thank you, Your Honour. We accept that, and I --
22 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
23 MS. SOMERS: -- reasons for doing that under these circumstances.
24 Q. In the statement -- and you may not have memorised the portion,
25 and if you don't remember it, I would ask you to let me know, and I would
1 ask the Chamber to allow you perhaps to refresh your recollection. But
2 when you spoke of General Strugar's comments at the meeting of 1 October,
3 whether or not the term "30.000" was in the same paragraph, which is what
4 counsel has raised to you on cross-examination. Do you recall any mention
5 -- do you recall any mention about General Strugar's actual comment in
6 the paragraph, or in the portion where you said that -- you talked about
7 his enthusiasm for defending Yugoslavia? Do you recall what you may have
8 said specifically? And if you don't, again, please tell me, and I will
9 ask the Chamber if it would allow you to refresh your recollection.
10 A. As far as I remember, he said what I said, that 30.000 Ustasha
11 were advancing on Montenegro and that we should defend ourselves. When I
12 walked into the meeting, Strugar was saying this. Momir Bulatovic spoke
13 after him, and then Strugar spoke again, and then Momir Bulatovic, and
14 then the remaining ministers present. That was the course of the meeting,
15 and the meeting was already halfway through, if not even further along. I
16 was late to the meeting because I had just returned from Cetinje.
17 MS. SOMERS: It appears that exact memory is not on point, and I
18 would ask the Chamber --
19 Q. I would ask you if it would help you as to what exactly you
20 told the investigators at the time to look at your statement. Would it
21 help you to remember better if you looked?
22 A. Yes. Can I please have the statement? It's been four years since
23 I made the statement. Therefore, I think I should be allowed to have a
24 look. I don't think I said anything special that I wouldn't be able to
25 remember today as for what happened at the meeting.
1 MS. SOMERS: I'm going to hand, if it's permissible -- it is
2 page 12 in English of 35. And I don't have the B/C/S cite. Perhaps I can
3 just find that as well. If you'd give me one second. And it would be on
4 page 12 of the English, and it would be on page 11 of the Serbo-Croatian
6 Do you have both, Mr. Usher? Okay. If I may -- just to draw the
7 attention. It's ERN, in the Serbo-Croatian edition, it's page 11, and
8 it's ERN 03013957. If I may offer the usher as well. Thank you.
9 Q. In Serbo-Croatian, I have -- just in order in the interest of
10 time, put a mark alongside in yellow to direct your attention to the
11 paragraph. Excuse me.
12 A. All of this is correct.
13 Q. Excuse me. Does that help you as to the comment regarding --
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. Okay. Thank you. If I could -- now, having --
16 A. The only thing that's not correct is: Jokic as inserted. Now
17 that's an error, and it's an error that I wish to correct.
18 Q. Right. We're looking right now -- you have made that correction
19 and we very much appreciate that. But when you were asked -- the comment
20 about the term "Ustasha" and General Strugar, can you remember what you
21 said now that you've had a chance to refresh your recollection? What was
22 your comment?
23 A. Ustasha is a derogatory term for --
24 Q. I'm sorry, Mr. Samardzic. Let's make sure we understand each
25 other. And I will - again, if the interests of the Chamber would permit
1 me to - direct you to the particular passage that just helped you refresh
2 your recollection. Strugar said he was happy that the Montenegrins would
3 fight. He said that the JNA would defend Yugoslavia against aggression by
4 the Ustasha and that the Dubrovnik -- and Dubrovnik would be liberated at
5 a minimum cost. He added that there were many Ustasha there.
6 Now, is that the reference to the numbers that you have attributed
7 in that particular passage to General Strugar addressing, "many Ustasha";
8 is that correct?
9 A. Yes. That there were a large number of Ustasha in Dubrovnik.
10 Q. And then just below, there's a reference to -- I'm sorry. Excuse
11 me one second. Just above it, I beg your pardon, there's a reference to
12 Bulatovic, with the number 30.000. Now, was the comment -- are you
13 linking the two comments? Are you suggesting -- do we understand you
14 correctly that General Strugar affirmed what was said, whether there may
15 have been mutual affirmation by Strugar and Bulatovic?
16 A. By all means. 30.000 Ustasha, that refers to what Strugar said.
17 Q. Thank you. Did the Croatians ever attack Montenegro during this
18 period? Was there in fact the dreaded attack on Montenegro?
19 A. No. Croatians never attacked Montenegro.
20 MS. SOMERS: Nothing further. Thank you, Your Honours.
21 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
22 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, if you allow. There
23 are two things that have cropped up in this re-examination that are not
24 connected to the witness, but rather to the work of the Prosecution in
25 this case. What this re-examination indicates is that this witness in his
1 statement prior to testifying in the Milosevic case made certain
2 corrections to his statement. The first question I want to raise is: Is
3 there any written trail of this in the OTP, a document like the one we
4 were given today? Every time an interview is conducted with a witness,
5 there are notes that are taken in one form or another. They are drafted
6 as an additional statement or an internal memorandum for the OTP. Is
7 there any such document? That's my first question.
8 The second question is, and I'm referring to the period prior to
9 the 8th of October, 1991, my second question is: In view of the fact that
10 the witness inserted certain corrections prior to his testimony in the
11 Milosevic case, was the accused, Milosevic, provided with such a document
12 containing the corrections made by Mr. Samardzic to the OTP before he
13 entered the courtroom on the 8th of October, 2002, as has been done in our
14 case? I believe these are both material questions and that there should
15 be a paper trail from the period. Thank you. Of course, by your leave,
16 we would very much like to have these documents and to see what exactly he
17 stated in them. Thank you.
18 JUDGE PARKER: Ms. Somers.
19 MS. SOMERS: First of all, Your Honour, there is -- any meetings
20 between the OTP and the witness, if anything new is brought up, it is in
21 some way dealt with, either through testimony or however the particular
22 Prosecutor in question deems most appropriate. So that particular issue
23 is a matter that was handled by that Prosecution team.
24 The second question is, it is unclear why Mr. Petrovic is
25 particularly concerned about the Milosevic receipt of anything. But I'm
1 confident that if there is any addendum to be made or any correction to be
2 made, this transcript will be provided to the Milosevic team. It is
3 public testimony. And it will certainly make its way where appropriate.
4 JUDGE PARKER: No. I think you misunderstand the point,
5 Ms. Somers. Mr. Petrovic is concerned whether there is any verification
6 in writing of the evidence -- that before giving evidence in the Milosevic
7 trial, Mr. Samardzic indicated corrections that should be made, and if so,
8 he would like to see that. And there were two limbs to that. Firstly,
9 the general, and then the particular question: Did that paper trail take
10 the form of a written correction, such as was used in this case?
11 MS. SOMERS: I cannot address the paper aspect of it for another
12 group of Prosecutors, and if the second prong is would it have been --
13 again, they would be dependent on another group of persons. But the
14 fact --
15 JUDGE PARKER: I wonder whether I could ask you, if it is
16 practical to identify any paper record, to make it available. If it is
17 not practical to identify it, we will have to proceed on the basis that
18 there is no paper record.
19 MS. SOMERS: We'll make an inquiry of the other persons involved.
20 Thank you.
21 JUDGE PARKER: Did I correctly understand your concern,
22 Mr. Petrovic?
23 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Yes. Yes, of course, Your Honour.
24 I'm not in the least interested in the Milosevic case, as far as that
25 aspect is concerned. What I want to know is whether there was any such
1 thing there. Even more importantly, if there was no such thing, how
2 should Ms. Somers know that today, on the basis of what, if something was
3 done back in 2002, how is it that she was informed about it if there is no
4 paper trail? This is a very simple matter, I believe, Your Honour, and we
5 are adamant that we should be given the specific document in which this is
6 stated. And as far as such a document exists from 2002, October, or
7 whenever Mr. Samardzic claims that he made these corrections to the OTP.
8 MS. SOMERS: Your Honour, the existence of a paper trail, just so
9 that it's clear, is by no means essential. If we learn of a correction
10 that needs to be made, or if it appears from testimony that there is
11 something that needs to be corrected, we will inquire of each other. But
12 we are always very interested to make sure that at least to the extent
13 possible, that the witness lets us know of anything that is not right, and
14 again, may be dealt with by different Prosecutors in different ways. This
15 is the way I have dealt with it.
16 JUDGE PARKER: Well, so that we're all clear, it's left on the
17 basis that you will cause inquiries to be made. If you can identify a
18 paper record, you will make it available. If you do not, we will proceed
19 on the basis that there is no paper record.
20 We will be --
21 MS. SOMERS: May I just raise that.
22 JUDGE PARKER: Yes.
23 MS. SOMERS: Mr. Samardzic is still here, I believe, for a bit of
24 time, and should there need to be any matter addressed by the other
25 Prosecution team, I'm sure that VW would make him available. Thank you.
1 JUDGE PARKER: Could I mention that we will adjourn now for the
2 day. We will resume tomorrow at 9.00. When we resume, there are two
3 matters that we think it would be convenient to deal with shortly but
4 immediately. Each concern expert witnesses. Firstly, we wish to hear the
5 brief Defence submissions concerning the general question of expert
6 witnesses and their statements, that we were hoping to hear last week, but
7 there proved not to be time to do it.
8 The second issue is that I understand now in your schedule,
9 Ms. Somers, you will be reaching, you expect, an expert witness near the
10 end of this week, and we would appreciate some brief submissions on the
11 relevance of the evidence of that witness to the issues in the indictment.
12 And if there's anything in response to that, also from Defence counsel.
13 MS. SOMERS: Your Honour, we were served with a motion about this,
14 and we would seek to respond to it, and I think -- so the Defence has
15 already filed, and it would be our -- it was our expert, their response
16 under 94 bis, and then we'd seek to reply. So we'll get that to you.
17 Thank you.
18 JUDGE PARKER: We would hope to hear you orally in the morning
19 first thing on those two issues. Thank you.
20 We will adjourn now for the day.
21 Mr. Samardzic, I do beg your pardon. I was rude enough to ignore
22 you. I didn't mean to do that. May we thank you for your attendance and
23 for the evidence and assistance that you've given to us, and you are now
24 free to leave. Thank you.
25 [The witness withdrew]
1 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.48 p.m.
2 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 27th day of January
3 2004, at 9.00 a.m.